Video of the Day: Perry Thinks There Are 8 Supreme Court Justices

By Garance Franke-Ruta

Or else he misspoke when addressing the Des Moines Register editorial board in Iowa earlier today:

He also had some trouble recalling Justice Sonia Sotomayor's name:

Lest you think this is just the liberals at Think Progress making a big deal of this, there's this take from the AP, which means the story has been fed out to newspapers around the country:

Presidential contender Rick Perry said there are eight Supreme Court justices, not nine, and flubbed Justice Sonia Sotomayor's (SOHN'-ya soh-toh-my-YOR') name in an editorial board meeting at The Des Moines Register.

Perry met with the board Friday. He struggled for six seconds to come up with Sotomayor's name, then initially called the justice "Montemayor." A member of the newspaper's editorial board helped him out with the correct name.

He went on to criticize "eight unelected and frankly unaccountable judges." Nine justices sit on the Supreme Court. They are nominated by the president and confirmed by the Senate.

Similar gaffes have plagued Perry. On Thursday in South Carolina, he corrected himself after saying the U.S. is at war in Iran instead of Iraq.

Of course, neither of these moments seems wildly out of the ordinary for regular extemporaneous human speech in a small group setting. But they are made much more notable in light of Perry's history of flubbing practiced set-pieces on national television.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2011/12/video-of-the-day-perry-thinks-there-are-8-supreme-court-justices/249794/