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Huckabee Steps Up Hostile Anti-LGBT Rhetoric in College Interview

Former Arkansas governor and presidential candidate Mike Huckabee is no stranger to anti-LGBT rhetoric.  During the 2008 campaign it was revealed that Huckabee, a pastor prior to entering politics, had once called homosexuality “an aberrant, unnatural, and sinful lifestyle” and said that AIDS patients should be quarantined. At the time reports of such comments struck a nerve in Huckabee’s campaign, as the derogatory statements contradicted a public image being advanced by his supporters of a more compassionate, conciliatory leader different from many of the traditionally intolerant figures of the religious right. Huckabee’s campaign eventually floundered, and he has subsequently gone on to become a prominent voice on the right with a nationally televised show on Fox News. That takes us to last week, when Huckabee upped the ante with even more blunt and hateful anti-LGBT comments.  In an interview with a college magazine that was first widely reported yesterday, Huckabee criticized LGBT activists for being “disingenuous” in advocating for civil unions, which he called “unnecessary.”  He said that he opposed gays serving openly in the military, asserting that “the purpose of the military is not to see if we can create social experiments” and that the repeal efforts are primarily a “posturing point for political purposes.” Then Huckabee let loose, comparing homosexuality to drug use, incest and polygamy:

“You don’t go ahead and accommodate every behavioral pattern that is against the ideal,” he said of same-sex marriage. “That would be like saying, well, there are a lot of people who like to use drugs, so let’s go ahead and accommodate those who want to use drugs. There are some people who believe in incest, so we should accommodate them. There are people who believe in polygamy, so we should accommodate them.”      

Huckabee also expressed his support for the discriminatory Arkansas law that prevents same-sex couples from serving as adoptive parents.  In a particularly egregious statement, he said that the country shouldn’t “experiment” with gay adoption:

“Children are not puppies,” he continued. “This is not a time to see if we can experiment and find out, how does this work?”

Early in his presidential campaign Huckabee seemed, at least to many, to represent a new face of the religious right.  It’s true that Huckabee’s style may be different, but his recent words echo the worst, most hateful forms of bigotry that persist among opponents of equality. Want to let Mike Huckabee know what you think?  Click here to send him a message. This post is from HRC's Darrin Hurwitz

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