Texas Gov. Rick Perry had what you might call an “oops” moment last night when his official Twitter account sent out a personal attack on the district attorney whose office recently indicted Perry on two criminal charges.
The tweet featured a picture of Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg, who was arrested last year for drunk driving, with the caption: “I don’t always drive drunk at 3x the legal blood alcohol limit… …but when I do, I indict Gov. Perry for calling me out about it. I am the most drunk Democrat in Texas.”
— Evan Smith (@evanasmith) September 1, 2014
At the bottom of the image is a banner advertising the Patriot Post, a right-wing website.
About an hour after the tweet went out, at 9:20pm ET, Perry tweeted that the previous message was “unauthorized” and that he did not “condone” it. The Governor did not offer any further explanation for how it had been published.
A tweet just went out from my account that was unauthorized. I do not condone the tweet and I have taken it down.
— Rick Perry (@GovernorPerry) September 1, 2014
A Republican-appointed judge in Travis County indicted Perry last month on charges of abuse of power and coercion of a public servant after he threatened to veto a bill that would fund the state’s Public Integrity Unit unless Lehmberg resigned. (Lehmberg recused herself from the case.) Perry and his supporters have maintained that the indictment rests on shaky legal footing; his opponents resolutely disagree.
Regardless of the propriety of the indictment, however, Perry’s opponents wasted no time attacking him for his shocking tweet.
— slackadjuster (@slackadjuster) September 1, 2014
Rick Perry can tweet & delete a poor mid-indictment partisan message a whole lot quicker than he can pay those troops he sent to the border
— Adam Weinstein (@AdamWeinstein) September 1, 2014
Rick Perry to veto funding for people who tweet for him.
— Adam Smith (@asmith83) September 1, 2014
Rick Perry had the GOP nomination until he apologized for that tweet. #RINO
— LOLGOP (@LOLGOP) September 1, 2014
Photo via Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia Commons (CC BY SA 2.0)