Vice President Mike Pence hosted gay Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar and his partner Matt Barrett at a breakfast at his home at the Naval Observatory on Thursday morning.
The meeting was significant as conservative Christian Pence’s anti-LGBTQ views are well documented. Additionally, Pence’s wife Karen teaches at a school that bans LGBTQ students and staff members, though she was not present for the meeting, according to the Washington Post. Varadkar had a meeting with Pence on his visit last year.
At a speech at the breakfast, Varadkar spoke about his sexual orientation, the Washington Post reports: ‘“I lived in a country where if I’d tried to be myself at the time, it would have ended up breaking laws,” the Irish prime minister said. “But today, that is all changed. I stand here, leader of my country, flawed and human, but judged by my political actions, and not by my sexual orientation, my skin tone, gender or religious beliefs.”’
“This is the first time that Vice President Pence has hosted an openly gay world leader at his residence, though that may simply be a reflection of their low numbers,” the paper adds.