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The Virulently Anti-gay, GOP-packed Values Voter Summit Has Begun: WATCH

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Family Research Council's annual Values Voter Summit kicks off in Washington D.C. today and, as always, features a who's who of anti-gay activists, politicians, and media personalities devoting their time and effort towards denying LGBT individuals equal rights.

Confirmed speakers for the 3-day extravaganza include Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN), Gary Bauer, Glenn Beck, Jason & David Benahm, Gen. William Boykin, Rep. Jim Bridenstien (R-OK), Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst (R-TX), TLC's Jim Bob & Michelle Duggar, Erick Erickson, Rep. John Fleming (R-LA), Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-MO), Mike Huckabee, Bishop E.W. Jackson, Gov. Bobby Jindal (R-LA), Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC), Sarah Palin, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), Tony Perkins, Sandy Rios, Rick Santorum, Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ), Todd Starnes, Mat Staver, Rep. Marlin Stutzman (R-IN), Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA), and many more. 

SummitThe hate summit is being live-streamed online. You can catch the video feed, AFTER THE JUMP...

And if you missed our exclusive report by People for the American Way's Drew Courtney about the Republican Party's cozy relationship with the hate group-backed summit, check that out HERE. The report details  how the GOP, despite signaling it would "rebrand" after the 2012 election, continues to align itself with extremist fringe groups that "actively seek to put LGBT people back in the closet, quash access to legal abortion, and restrict the free exercise rights of non-Christian religious minorities."

Continue reading "The Virulently Anti-gay, GOP-packed Values Voter Summit Has Begun: WATCH" »


Some Things Never Change: The Values Voter Summit and the Dubious 'Rebranding' of the GOP

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BY DREW COURTNEY

Following the failure of the GOP to recapture the White House in the last presidential election, rebranding was a word that got knocked around a lot within party circles and in the media. In order to shore up the hemorrhaging support of women, ethnic and racial minorities, and young voters, it was agreed that the GOP platform would have to embrace less alienating positions on a variety of policy issues.

Now on the eve of midterm elections almost two years later, it’s become clear that Republican officials aren’t sticking to the plan. This weekend, conservative lawmakers including Sen. Ted Cruz, Sen. Rand Paul, and Gov. Bobby Jindal are slated to participate in what has become a rite of passage for presidential hopefuls of the GOP: courting the support of the Religious Right at the Family Research Council’s (FRC) annual Values Voter Summit.

VvsLurching in the opposite direction from the rest of the country, Republican officials are aligning themselves with extremist fringe groups that actively seek to put LGBT people back in the closet, quash access to legal abortion, and restrict the free exercise rights of non-Christian religious minorities. The FRC — as well as other primary sponsors of the event including the American Family Association, Liberty Counsel and American Values — has been instrumental in encouraging the GOP’s continued rightward march and carries a great deal of influence over evangelical Tea Party voters who form the core of the far right, a group that presidential contenders in the party increasingly feel the need to cater to.

A look at a few of the speakers scheduled to share the stage with leading Republican figures shows how grievously out of step the party is with the values of the American people AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Some Things Never Change: The Values Voter Summit and the Dubious 'Rebranding' of the GOP" »


Sandy Rios Calls IL Senator Mark Kirk A 'Closet Homosexual' Out To Ruin The GOP: AUDIO

6a00d8341c730253ef019104d5a94e970c-250wiIn the wake of Republican incumbent Thad Cochran defeating his Tea Party challenger Chris McDaniel in the primary race for one of Mississippi’s U.S. Senate seats, Sandy Rios of the American Family Association took to her talk show to mourn McDaniel’s loss and in so doing found a way to bring up an old allegation that Senator Mark Kirk of Illinois is gay. The discussing of Kirk came up after Rios blamed McDaniel’s loss on Arizona Senator John McCain, as Right Wing Watch points out:

According to Rios, McCain embarked on a campaign — “and I know about this for personal reasons” — to “purge the Republican Party of conservative candidates” and “turn the Republican Party blue” following the 2008 election.

“He decided that Mark Kirk was his first pick [for ,” Rios said.“Many of us in Illinois at the time, conservatives, knew that this was going to be a disaster.”

After reviewing several controversies that emerged during Kirk’s U.S. Senate campaign that she said showed he “was not an honest person,” Rios said that “we also knew that he was a closet homosexual.”

KirkPreviously, when Kirk was running for U.S. Senate Rios penned an article titled, “Do We Have a Right to Know If Candidates Are Gay?,” Rios put to Kirk a series of questions about his sexual orientation: 

1) Are you gay?

2) Have you been living with another homosexual Congressman?

3) Were you sued by another male staffer in John Porter’s office for sexual harassment?

Congressman Mark Kirk, please answer these questions. Republican leadership, if you are covering up things the public should know, stop or you will lose even more credibility with your base. And press? Do your job. Your duty is not to defend a lifestyle; it is to report the truth. 

Kirk has also been ‘outed’ on the left by blogger Mike Rogers who features prominently in the documentary, Outrage.  Though Kirk previously voted against repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and opposed an overhaul of DOMA, last year he came out in favor of marriage equality and ENDA.

Kirk was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2000 and to the U.S. Senate in 2010. He suffered a stroke in 2012. 

Listen to Rios' remarks, AFTER THE JUMP...

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AFA's Sandy Rios Calls Matthew Shepard's Murder a 'Complete Fraud': VIDEO

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American Family Association radio host Sandy Rios took the podium at the Values Voters Summit over the weekend to toot about how Christian conservatives are being threatened in America, citing a letter from the Southern Poverty Law Center and other civil rights groups urging Republicans to stay away from the Summit, Right Wing Watch reports.

She also took the opportunity, on the anniversary of Matthew Shepard's murder to tell those assembled that it was a "complete fraud", citing claims in a recent book by wingnut Stephen Jimenez that Shepard's death was the result of "a drug deal gone bad".

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

The Matthew Shepard Foundation has blasted the Jimenez book, saying "Attempts now to rewrite the story of this hate crime appear to be based on untrustworthy sources, factual errors, rumors and innuendo rather than the actual evidence gathered by law enforcement and presented in a court of law."

Continue reading "AFA's Sandy Rios Calls Matthew Shepard's Murder a 'Complete Fraud': VIDEO" »


AFA's Sandy Rios: Gays and Women in the Military Will Undermine Effectiveness of Syrian Strike - AUDIO

Sandy RiosAmerican Family Association nut Sandy Rios today warned that any potential U.S. military intervention in Syria may fail as a result of the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell and the opening of additional Navy positions to female service members.

Said Rios on her radio show:

"When I looked at those battleships going into the Mediterranean, supposedly getting ready for battle in Syria, I couldn't help think about all the stories I've read about how women now are in the ranks of the Navy, getting pregnant at exponential numbers; when I think about the folding in and the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell and the homosexual takeover of so much of our military I'm not sure how effective those naval ships will be."

Listen, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Sandy Rios To Gays and Liberals: 'God Will Even The Score'

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LGBT people and their allies have scored decisive and historic victories in recent months, both here in the United States as well as around the globe. Such rapid progress is almost certain to prompt a verbal backlash by opponents of equality. However, one recent comment made by ultra-conservative and vocally-homophobic radio host Sandy Rios proved to be a bit more ominous than usual:

"I would not want to be in the shoes of any of the left right now. I would not want to be in Barack Obama’s shoes. I would not want to be in the shoes of homosexual activists. I say that with humility and with fear for them because God will even the score, he will sort things out, he will be God and he will not be mocked. Whereas they think they are getting away with breaking all kinds of moral laws and mocking everyone in the process, they just don’t know God, they don’t know who they are up against and we do. And that should bring out some mercy in us because I wouldn’t want to be—what did that old evangelist say: ‘it’s a fearful thing to fall into the hands of an angry God.’"

Thankfully, Rios' diatribe does not appear to be a veiled threat that references any specific retribution that should come from this so-called "angry God". Nevertheless, these comments come as part of a trend of especially violent comments that Rios has been making as of late. She has also recently expressed her support of the massacres taking place in Egypt, saying that she was "grateful" and claiming that the more than 600 victims were not "innocent". She also expressed an opinion that Muslim-Americans do not deserve to be protected by the First Amendment. 

Listen to Rios' foreboding comments, thanks to Right Wing Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Sandy Rios To Gays and Liberals: 'God Will Even The Score'" »


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