As Republican presidential hopeful Michele Bachmann’s antigay views continue to be a major news topic, even as she tries to distance herself from them, the gay conservative group GOProud has requested a meeting with her.
“We’ve made this request, as with the other requests, in good faith,” GOProud executive director Jimmy LaSalvia told the Yahoo! political blog The Ticket, noting the group’s outreach to others in the Republican presidential field. GOProud officials, he said, want to “discuss issues important to gay conservatives” with Bachmann as well as “anything she wishes to talk about.”
Bachmann, a congressional representative from Minnesota, has said homosexuality is “part of Satan” and is estranged from her lesbian stepsister. She has supported constitutional amendments to ban same-sex marriage in her home state and at the federal level.
Her husband, Marcus Bachmann, runs a group of mental health clinics that reportedly offer so-called reparative therapy to convert gays to straight. He recently denied that he is antigay and said his clinics offer reparative therapy to clients who request it but do not force it on anyone.
GOProud’s chairman, Christopher Barron, told Politico that he is “concerned” and “troubled” by Representative Bachmann’s antigay record and statements but would not “be part of any ‘war against Michele Bachmann.’” GOProud is largely focused on fiscal issues, on which it generally takes the same positions as other conservative groups, but it does oppose a federal constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage.
To The Ticket, LaSalvia added that defeating President Obama is GOProud’s priority in next year’s election. The group will seek “to be helpful to whoever secures the GOP nomination,” he said.