Rick Perry tries to walk back his comments flirting with secession, without backing down on his anti-Washington stance, in an “Editorial” released to the media, which ran in several Texas papers. An excerpt:

About a month ago, I stood with a bipartisan group of Texas legislators to speak in support of a resolution honoring the 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The resolution simply restates the Constitution’s principle of Federalism, that powers not granted to the national government nor prohibited to the states are reserved to the states or the people.

At a time when the federal government is passing trillion-dollar bailouts, bullying states to increase taxes and bureaucracies, and even taking control of private companies, Americans are increasingly reconnecting with the concept of limited government contained in that amendment.

I can’t say I was surprised that critics worked so hard to recast my defense of federalism and fiscal discipline into advocacy for secession from the Union.   Of course, I have never advocated for secession and never will.

Like the President, members of Congress and every other state governor, I have sworn oaths to our nation and Constitution.  My sincere pledge to uphold and defend the Constitution has fueled my concern and my statements about the recent unprecedented expansion of our federal government.

The TEA Parties that rose up across the country and will continue in the months to come are examples of what Thomas Jefferson, an architect of our Constitution, meant when he said, “Every generation needs a new revolution.”  In our time, this informed dissent is taking shape in response to Washington’s unprecedented excess. Just this week, I took part in a nationwide tele-townhall meeting that showed this sentiment continues to grow.

When Congress and the President make plans to increase the federal debt by one-third in just the first 100 days, citizens and taxpayers should be worried.  When federal “stimulus” bills force state governments to change long-standing laws, raise taxes and increase government spending, citizens and taxpayers should be outraged.  The swollen river known as the federal government has clearly overflowed its banks.

Published at Gov. Perry: Reflections on a Raging Debate