Two Italian politicians have gone on YouTube to beg voters to keep the country 'clean' and not 'vote with your ass' by supporting same-sex marriage.
LGBT associations have branded the video by the right wingers as homophobic.
‘Vote with your heart and with your brain. Don’t vote with your ass,’ is what Alberto Romano Pedrina and Raffaele Zanon say in the video.
It has been released for their campaign for the general elections, which will take place in Italy this Sunday (24 February).
Pedrina and Zanon are running with the right-wing party Fratelli D’Italia. Its leader Giorgia Meloni distanced herself from the video and apologized for it.
‘They have understood what they made,’ Meloni added. ‘This is not going to happen again.’
In the video, Pedrina and Zanon said: ‘We strongly believe in a clean country, where family has to be protected and where the real love is between a man and a woman only.
‘We love women. We love Giorgia Meloni,’ they added.
Italian LGBT associations reacted angrily. Gay Center’s leader Fabrizio Marrazzo said: ‘This is electoral homophobia and all we know that gay hate is something sick, we can not make it enter the parliament.’
Gay candidate Alessandro Zan said: ‘This is real Fascism and the Italian right is really dangerous.’
The two politicians defended their video: ‘It was ironic. We are not homophobic.’
Watch the video (from la Repubblica newspaper):