You know the bipartisanship is deep when a minority-party governor starts talking secession. At a "tea party" tax protest in Austin today, Texas Governor Rick Perry did just that. The Huffington Post reports that an "animated" Perry, speaking before a flag-waving crowd cheering "secede!" called the protesters "patriots" and said that Texas' joined the United States in 1845 with the understanding that it could pull out whenever it wanted to -- like when the national government chooses a tax policy against Lone Star's liking. "We've got a great union," Perry said. "There's absolutely not reason to dissolve it. But if Washington continues to thumb their nose at the American people, you know, who knows what might come out of that. But Texas is a very unique place, and we're a pretty independent lot to boot." Austin's tea party is part of a national movement to protest President Obama's tax plan, inspired by the historic Boston Tea Party as well as CNBC personality Rick Santelli who first advocated such protest on his television show. Governor Perry is among the GOP governors rejecting portions of the stimulus and faces a steep re-election battle against fellow Republican Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison in 2010. Texas' last secession, in 1861, ended when the North won the Civil War.