“In the 2010 election cycle, 31 percent of self-identified gay and lesbian voters chose to vote Republican,” he continued. They “are part of the big tent that is going to help us win back the United States Senate and the White House next year. ... Now is not the time for our party to get off message because of the personal viewpoints of certain politicians. Now is the time to focus on the critical matters at hand.”
Denis Dison, a spokesman for the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund, which helps openly gay candidates win elected office, accused Santorum of using the presidential nominating process to draw attention to his “outrageous” social views.
Santorum, meanwhile, suggested a double standard, especially in what appears to be a new era of civility in the wake of the Arizona shootings.
“It’s just a sad commentary,” he told Roll Call. “You want to talk about incivility. I don’t know of anybody on the left who came to my defense for the incivility with respect to those things.”
Urban called on liberal leaders to do just that.
“If somebody had a website up that maligned somebody who wasn’t a white, Christian, conservative, male, Rachel Maddow’s head would explode,” he said. “Where’s Rachel Maddow on this?”
Dison offered Santorum a suggestion: “I think that civility in politics is a fantastic goal. ... Speaking from the LGBT community, we wish he would practice it.”
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., right, hugs Harold Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters, after the Congressman spoke at the IAFF's Legislative Conference General Session at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, March 9, 2015. The day featured addresses by members of Congress and Vice President Joe Biden.