“I’ve made some dumb, dumb mistakes, and obviously talking about this stuff is part of it,” he said during a press conference on Wednesday at the Torrey Pines Golf Course in San Diego, Calif.
The golfer added that he believes he should not have used his fame to speak out about a political and financial issue, and that it has never been an issue for him to pay his “fair share.” Mickelson also said his remarks were insensitive to those living “paycheck-to-paycheck” or people looking for work.
“I love this country, and I love the opportunities that it’s afforded me to be successful and do what I love,” he said.
The three-time Masters winner also joked that it wasn’t the first time he’s said something stupid and caused a press uproar, saying he’ll “deal with it.” He added that he would not talk more about a possible move or his future plans until he knew exactly what he was going to do.
Mickelson’s original comments, made on Sunday after the last round of the Humana Challenge, sparked speculation about his retirement or a possible move out of California. The golfer released a statement on Monday night expressing regret that he had spoken publicly about his tax situation.
“Finances and taxes are a personal matter, and I should not have made my opinions on them public,” Mickelson’s statement said. “I apologize to those I have upset or insulted, and assure you I intend not to let it happen again.”
Fellow golfing great Tiger Woods said during a Tuesday morning press conference at Torrey Pines that he agreed with Mickelson’s position on taxes, according to The Los Angeles Times.
“Well, I moved out of here back in ’96 for that reason,” Woods explained. “I enjoy Florida, but also I understand what he was, I think, trying to say. I think he’ll probably explain it better and in a little more detail.”
Texas Gov. Rick Perry tweeted Mickelson and invited him to move to the Lone Star state, where taxes are lower and there is no income tax.
Hey Phil....Texas is home to liberty and low taxes...we would love to have you as well !!tinyurl.com/b3zuhnd— Rick Perry (@GovernorPerry) January 21, 2013