Discussing the “homosexual agenda” at a presidential debate more than a decade ago, Cox said that the government should not “sanction” same-sex relationships.
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Speaking at the a Values Voters debate in 2007, he added:
“We also have this problem with transvestites who want to be school teachers. What the Republican Party needs to stand for is school choice and home-schooling, so that we can keep our children in the schools of our choice, and we won’t have to deal with that.
“We certainly need to stand up for the proper behavior, we absolutely need to do that, but we need to use common sense, and talk about the fact that we can’t open the floodgates to polygamy and bestiality and all kinds of other things.”
Cox made the comments during a short-lived unsuccessful presidential bid, according to the San Jose Mercury-News.
New: Gay rights could "open the floodgates to polygamy and bestiality," California GOP governor candidate John Cox suggested in a 2007 debate https://t.co/kwc4d9u6AM
— Casey Tolan (@caseytolan) February 12, 2018
In a statement issued on Monday, Cox said that the issue of gay marriage was settled by the Supreme Court and that his views had changed over time.
“Like many Californians, my views have evolved over the last decade. I concluded that it was inconsistent with my support for individual liberty, limited government and the right to privacy.
“The focus of my campaign is economic growth and freedom and I’m looking forward to engaging the LGBTQ community and all Californians to revive the California Dream.”
According to the Los Angeles Times, in 2007 Cox also said he supported a constitutional amendment to define marriage as between a man and a woman, opposed guest worker programs and pledged to veto hate-crimes legislation and legislation that prohibited employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.
He also argued that schools should have federal funds blocked if they expose children to “homosexual propaganda.”