Press Release Text'Anti-gay extremists are trying to gain a stranglehold on government,' said HRC President Joe Solmonese.
WASHINGTON - The New York Times revealed today that White House officials have sought out advice on a Supreme Court nominee from the Rev. Jerry Falwell, one of the most divisive far-right figures in America today.
"Anti-gay extremists are trying to gain a stranglehold on government," said Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese. "Americans want their leaders to come together, not engage in divisive political fights over the next Supreme Court justice."
Following the September 11 attacks on the United States, Falwell laid blame on gays and lesbians - along with feminists, civil rights advocates and others - for causing the tragedy. "I point the finger in their face and say 'you helped this happen,'" he said.
The news of Falwell's consultation with the White House comes a day after Jay Sekulow, leader of Pat Robertson's American Center for Law and Justice, urged the president to reject calls for consensus and nominate a hard-line conservative. ACLJ founder Robertson joined Falwell in his hateful comments after September 11.
"The far right is willing to abandon civility in order to get a nominee who satisfies their narrow interests," said Solmonese. "The president is not filling a vacancy in a far-right political group but on our nation's highest court. America deserves a nominee who believes in justice for all Americans, not someone beholden to a fringe ideological agenda."
Falwell has a long history of anti-lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rhetoric. He was quoted in Cox News Service last year saying, "AIDS is not just God's punishment for homosexuals it is God's punishment for the society that tolerates homosexuals."
The Human Rights Campaign is the largest national lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender political organization with members throughout the country. It effectively lobbies Congress, provides campaign support and educates the public to ensure that LGBT Americans can be open, honest and safe at home, at work and in the community.
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