WATCH: Chelsea Clinton Grills Rick Warren on Marriage Equality
On Friday's episode of Rock Center with Brian Williams on NBC, Chelsea Clinton sat down with notoriously antigay pastor Rick Warren to challenge his assertions that he can be a loving Christian while still condemning marriage equality
Clinton grills Warren on why his sense of compassion doesn't extend to equal marriage rights for LGBT Americans.
"I don't hate anybody," says Warren. "In fact, I'm commanded by Jesus Christ to love everybody. I'm commanded to treat them with respect. As I've mentioned many times, there's a difference between acceptance and approval."
Clinton, an ardent supporter of LGBT equality, presses Warren on what that distinction means in a practical sense, prompting Warren to allege that Clinton, like "every single journalist," is promoting a hidden agenda.
"It's not a hidden agenda," replies Clinton. "But in a year in which we had equal marriage in different ways on the ballot, and now after those votes, there's equal marriage rights in nine out of our 50 states, and a majority of Americans now said in 2012 that we as a country support equal marriage largely, I think that's why people keep asking you."
"Well, what do they expect a Christian pastor to say?" Asks a visibly agitated Warren. "I don't believe the bible anymore?"
"We're in a democracy, Chelsea," Warren continues, clearly talking down to the daughter of the former president and current Secretary of State. "So nobody wins all the time. And gay marriage might become the rule someday. That doesn't mean I think it's right. I do not favor the redefinition of marriage."
Watch the tense interview below, where Warren goes on to complain about how marriage equality activists are insistent upon using the word "marriage" to describe the committed union of two people who want that relationship recognized by the government.