Edwards went on to ask Perry about the Department of Education later in the interview.
“They are blackmailing states with our own money, basically saying, 'Here is the national test, and here are the national standards you’re going to put into place,' ” Perry said. “One size fits all doesn’t work. Well, maybe it does in gym socks, but it sure doesn’t in how we educate our children.”
During a November Republican debate in Michigan, Perry famously could not remember all three agencies he would eliminate.
“I will tell you, it is three agencies of government when I get there that are gone. Commerce, Education and the — what’s the third one there? Let’s see,” Perry said.
As other candidates threw out suggestions in an attempt to aid the Texas governor, he continued to struggle, prompting moderator John Hardwood to ask if he genuinely couldn't remember the third of the agencies.
“I can’t. The third one, I can’t. Sorry. Oops," Perry said.
Perry spokesman Mark Miner later told ABC that all departments would be evaluated for elimination.
"Every agency is on the chopping block," Miner said. "It shouldn't be surprising that the governor is talking about another agency that needs to be looked at and cut."