HRC Blog

Connect the Dots between Kris Kobach and Africa’s Anti-Gay Movement

Call it outPost submitted by Dan Rafter, Former HRC Associate Director of Communications

Yesterday, Mitt Romney proudly announced Kris Kobach’s endorsement of his presidential campaign. Kobach is the Kansas Secretary of State and a far-right conservative who was the architect of SB 1070, Arizona’s controversial anti-immigration law. Additionally, Kobach’s church, the Christ Church, Anglican of Overland Park, has questionable ties to the dangerous anti-gay movement in Africa.

Religion Dispatch’s Lauri Lebo reported in 2010 that Kobach’s Church was a member of the Anglican Mission of the Americas – which is sponsored by the Anglican Church of Rwanda.

Unfortunately, many of the leaders of the Anglican Church of Rwanda actively work to spread misinformation about LGBT people. According to a 2007 report from The New Times in Kigali, Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini called on East African churches to fight homosexuality “for the good of society.” Kolini went on to say that his churches would not “mingle” with LGBT people in matters of faith, adding: “We are reformed Anglicans who want to adhere to the original creeds of the Bible, and that’s why our church has decided to ignore the 2008 Lambeth Conference because it has not done much to fight homosexuality in the communion.”

Kobach himself has acknowledged his own personal ministry outreach in Africa. Despite calling HRC and other LGBT equality organizations groups that supported “homosexual pedophilia,” Kobach pointed to his work in Uganda as proof that he “doesn’t have a racist bone in [his] body.” The Anglican Church of Uganda, like the Anglican Church of Rwanda, is rabidly anti-gay. Intervention of U.S.-based fundamentalist missionaries played a major role in stirring up support for Uganda’s “Kill the Gays” bill, legislation that would make being gay a crime punishable by death.

It’s time for Kobach to answer a simple question: has he ever been a part of, or does he support, American evangelical efforts in Africa to stir up dangerous anti-gay sentiment?

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