Perry defends controversial claims – first made at Mon. debate – U.S. ally ruled by Islamic terrorists, questions NATO membership.
Tells CNN’s Blitzer Tues: “This is a country that’s got some explaining to do to the United States.”
Earlier: Ankara releases scathing statement on “baseless and inappropriate” comments; calls out candidates “who do not even know their allies.”
AND State Dept. spox jumps on ’12er-bashing bandwagon: “We absolutely and fundamentally disagree with that assertion.”