JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -

Anita Perry, wife of Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry, walked into a Jacksonville Republican women's event Thursday, less than 24 hours after her husband had one of the most uncomfortable political gaffes in recent memory.

"You know, he may have forgotten a word last night," Anita Perry said at Thursday's event. "Thanks for everyone saying something. I went straight for Key Lime Pie. I needed some comfort food."

Even Anita Perry was trying to make light of her husband forgetting one of three federal departments he would cut if elected president.

"Eveybody forgets something now and then, but he remembered our anniversary last week," she said. "People are giving him a break."

Rick Perry, who's developing a reputation for bad debate performances, has been doing a media blitz since the gaffe, trying to pivot the point back to the size of the federal government, saying that the average American can't even keep track of all federal departments.

"He admitted he made that error, been up early on shows, but we're moving on. We're fighters," Anita Perry said.

Voters plugged into local Republican politics seem to be pretty forgiving.

"I thought he was doing really great until then, but that can happen to anybody, and I thought he's gone on TV and radio, so he's been very forthright about it," one voter said.

Surprisingly enough, in Anita Perry's opening remarks Thursday, she credited one of her husband's competitors Michele Bachmann, saying she's a strong example of Republican women. Then she went on to defend her husband.