Vice President Mike Pence said today that Donald Trump is an “unwavering ally” of Focus on the Family, the conservative Christian ministry that has been long been considered one of the most influential anti-gay groups.
Pence called Trump a “leader,” a “believer,” and a “tireless defender of the values that will make America great again.”
I promise you, Focus on the Family, you have an unwavering ally in President Donald Trump… President Trump has stood without apology for the most vulnerable in our society, the aged, the disabled, the infirm and the unborn… And this summer, when we repeal and replace Obamacare, we’re going to defund Planned Parenthood once and for all.
The Associated Press reported that Pence also asked conservative Christians to “get active in the health care debate.”
Pence told about 1,650 people gathered that “the time is now” to push for a health care overhaul. Pence urged religious conservatives to engage in debate, especially because the bill announced in the Senate includes strong anti-abortion provisions.
Focus on the Family is less active politically than it was a decade ago. Pence urged Focus not to shy away from “advocating in the public square.”
Pence also voiced support for Focus on the Family on Twitter. He praised the group, which is staunchly anti-abortion and anti-LGBT, for 40 years of ministry.
— Vice President Pence (@VP) June 23, 2017
Pence’s comments are controversial in part because they contradict what Trump himself has said.
For starters, Trump has promised to “protect” LGBT communities. Now, it would seem, his surrogate and second-in-command is giving Trump’s explicit endorsement of a group that has fought against their rights at every turn. This isn’t all that surprising, though, considering the administration’s record on these issues.
Trump has also gone back and forth on the abortion issue, at one point taking five different positions in three days. With the endorsement of Focus on the Family, however, we can be sure Trump will be a staunch anti-abortion activist President. That was suggested when he targeted funding for abortion clinics, but this new relationship solidifies it.
In times when Americans are as divided as ever, we need to distance ourselves from groups promoting further division and hate — not embrace them. Focus on the Family has always worked against civil rights and equality for LGBT Americans and women, and they once again have allies in the White House who take their bigotry seriously.
(via Right Wing Watch)