GOP hopefuls tackle LGBT rights


Alternate TextNext year, the White House is up for grabs. The GOP is trying to figure who they want to run against President Obama. While the economy is the most talked about topic, the candidates are weighing in on same-sex marriage as well.

Here’s a roundup of what the frontrunners are saying:

Rick Perry
The current Texas Governor has sent mixed messages on his stance regarding gay marriage.

Infamously, he was caught on camera saying, “There is still a land of opportunity, friends — it’s called Texas. We’re creating more jobs than any other state in the nation. … Would you rather live in a state like this, or in a state where a guy can marry a guy?”

When he knows people are listening, he’s supported gay rights, but not same-sex marriage. He said he would support a federal ban on gay marriage, which appears to contradict his prior assertion that states should pass their own laws defining marriage.

In his 2008 book “On My Honor,” he wrote: “Even if an alcoholic is powerless over alcohol once it enters his body, he still makes a choice to drink. And, even if someone is attracted to a person of the same sex, he or she still makes a choice to engage in sexual activity with someone of the same gender.”

Mitt Romney
The former Massachusetts Governor definitely has a history of being gay friendly. In his prior runs for public office, he ran on platforms supporting gay rights.

Romney maintains he is in favor of gay rights, but echoes the competition in being anti-same-sex marriage. When accused of flip-flopping, he said his views remain unchanged. Same-sex marriage was never on the table, so he had not weighed in until now. He contends that if gay marriage had been an issue in the past, he would not have supported it.

At a recent town hall in New Hampshire, he said, “What I would support is letting people who are of the same gender form, if you will, partnership agreements. If they want to have a partnership with someone else and have, as a result of that, such things as hospital visitation rights and similar benefits of that nature.”

Newt Gingrich
The former Speaker of the House is no friend to the LGBT community. He’s made no bones about it.

In 2009, he told Fox News, “I think there is a gay and secular fascism in this country that wants to impose its will on the rest of us, is prepared to use violence, to use harassment. I think it is prepared to use the government if it can get control of it. I think that it is a very dangerous threat to anybody who believes in traditional religion.”

True to his values, he maintains the stance the homosexuality is a sin. He would under no circumstance be in favor of same-sex marriage, though he’s a huge fan of heterosexual marriage, indulging himself three times so far.

Herman Cain
The former CEO of Godfather’s Pizza and Gingrich share the same views on same-sex marriage.

Like Gingrich, Cain has stated he would not support marriage rights for same-sex couples as he believes homosexuality is a sin and in traditional family values.

He has further stated he would try to pass a ban on gay marriage. He thinks being gay is a choice.

Michelle Bachmann
One of the more talked about opponents of gay marriage is Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann of Minnesota.

In 2003 and 2005, she led an effort within the Minnesota Legislature, which if passed, would have barred the state of Minnesota from recognizing same-sex marriages.

In September, Bachmann appeared on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” to reaffirm her belief that marriage is between a man and woman. She said she would oppose any effort to expand the rights of marriage to same-sex couples.

Bachmann has been a consistent opponent of same-sex marriage. Her beliefs are religiously driven. She told KKMS radio in 2004 that same-sex marriage “is an earthquake issue. This will change our state forever. Because the immediate consequence, if gay marriage goes through, is that K-12 little children will be forced to learn that homosexuality is normal, natural and perhaps they should try it.”

Rick Santorum
Like the rest of his fellow GOP candidates, the former Pennsylvania Senator has stated he is not in favor of same-sex marriage.

His statements regarding the right to marry have been considered the most outrageous when compared to his fellow GOP hopefuls. Santorum has argued that passing legislation allowing lesbian and gay people to marry would lead to the United States having to legalize things like marrying animals, bigamy and incest.

While Romney seems to be the most tolerant of the LGBT community, he still has his limits.  Based on the above positions from the GOP one thing is clear, should a Republican win the White House in 2012, the LGBT civil rights movement may hit a wall.



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