As Petition To Replace Anti-Gay Inauguration Pastor Gathers Steam, White House Stays Mum


President Obama and his inauguration committee are going to have some added stress over the next few days: a growing movement, including a We the People petition on the White House's official page, to replace Louie Giglio as the inauguration preacher.

Giglio, much like the 2008 inauguration preacher, Rick Warren, has a history of preaching hate against homophobia. "We must reach out and we must aggressively move toward the homosexual community," he said in a 1990s era speech called "In Search of a Standard – Christian Response to Homosexuality."

The We The People petition asks the president to replace Giglio with an LGBT friendly clergy person. 

Meanwhile, Chris Johnson at the Washington Blade asked press secretary Jay Carney about Giglio yesterday, but Carney wouldn't comment.

"I haven’t seen that report," Carney said of the ThinkProgress post that revealed Giglio's past comments. "I would refer you to the inaugural committee. I haven’t seen the report." By now Carney and the rest of the team have seen the report, and soon there will be no excuse for official silence.


  1. stephen lucas says

    Why is it that Obama always chooses anti-gay pastors for his benedictions? There are hundreds of other pastors who are decent and inclusive. Frankly, Obama’s choices are worrying.

    Obama can’t be called pro-gay if he plays our interests against those who oppress us. This isn’t a game, Mr President.

  2. andrew says

    We should end all clerical “benedictions” at our civic events. These preachers of ancient myths have no place in the civic events of a 21st century society. Not the biggoted ones like this creep or the warm and fuzzy liberal clerical enablers. They all preach ancient myths as if they are true.

  3. Albert says

    Yet, the inaugural poet is gay. And Myrlie Evers will also be doing a prayer at the ceremony. In this context, and based on Obama’s LGBT policy positions and personnel nominations, I’m not going to be wildly upset about this. He is the president for these dolts too.

  4. George says

    Really, come on–I’ll bet there are better invocators that are more inclusive. I’m sure we can have a KKK Pastor who hates Jews AND Fags do the invocation. Why not be more inclusive in the hate? And who hates atheists, Muslims and Hindus too! Maybe Rev. Phelps should give the invocation?
    Religion: a steaming pile of anthropogenic myth.
    Obama: a two-faced, drone-loving, bankster-supporting, earth-destroying, coprocratic jackanape.

  5. Dback says

    I think Albert has a point–right-wingers are probably just as bent about the gay poet who’s been chosen to read. If we get to kick out the pastor, do they then get to kick out the poet?

    Like it or not–and I’m not saying I do–this whole thing is kind of a First Amendment test.

  6. candideinnc says

    I am with George. Let’s be REALLY inclusive with our enemies. Let’s get a anti-semite, neo-Nazi, homophobic, misogynistic, fundie to give the convocation. But for consistency, the “minister” should also be racist. I am sure Mr. Obama could see himself clear to embrace the Anti-Christ.

  7. Jay says

    I spent 54 minutes of my time listening to the literally stomach-turning sermon. This man is dangerous as well as an ignorant buffoon. He cites approving the levitical injunction that homosexuals should be executed. He is far worse than Rick Warren. Please sign the petition.

  8. Chitown Kev says

    Come ON, Wondermann, if Obama wants to someone not to be there, than kibbosh on anyone that the committee selects for whatever reason, he can. Period.

    Now he may preach more hate than Warren but remember that Warren’s selection was also in the aftermath of Proposition 8 passing, so I don’t think this is quite as symbolic as the Warren selection.

    But Andrew you may want to revise this:

    “has a history of preaching hate against homophobia.”

    That would actually mean that he’s pro-gay

  9. Yupp says

    I was wondering about that myself. Does Obama choose these people or his staff? (I can imagine the President not having time enough to go choosing goofy clery and poets because he’s doing more important biz, but…..not sure..)

  10. Yupp says

    And I voted for Obama, but isn’t the inauguration stuff boring anyway?? Except for a moment or two. Who remembers any of the poets or clergymen? That’s when eveybody goes to the bathroom (like in Marx Bros movies when Harpo played the harp).

  11. Chitown Kev says

    Now that I think about it, that choice of Warren by Obama sure did wonders for Rick Warren hasn’t it?

    The fundies trust Warren even less than they did and it spotlighted Warren’s other activities (esp. in Africa).

    So as far as my opinion on this, I think I’ll wait. Giglio will not say anything as part of this ceremony that is anti-gay, to be sure.

    Yeah, I’m pretty agnostic about this.

  12. John Ellis says

    Mr President,

    You needs to change the pastor that you are using for the inauguration. John T Ellis 6095 West 84 th way, Arvada, co. 80003
    Email johnofthe
    Mr. Pres. in all due respect, when will you start supporting the people that work for you and voted for you and need the changes in this country?

  13. Mary says

    “I’m still wondering how a Protestant pastor has the name of a Brooklyn pizza chef.”

    Yupp, it’s likely that Pastor Giglio is a convert. But I can tell you that there are a lot more Italian-American Protestants than people realize. I’m one of them. My church is filled with them, including the pastor himself.

  14. Yupp says

    Okay, Mary..thanks. I just never knew one in NYC or NJ, but…obviously more than I think, yes. Is it, initially, because of disatisfaction with Catholicism ?

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