The Obama campaign has blasted Republican vice-president nominee Paul Ryan for his gay rights record.
When US president nominee Mitt Romney accidentally introduced Wisconsin representative Ryan as ‘the next president of the United States’ yesterday (11 August), the Democratic campaign were quick to criticize the social and economic conservative.
‘Every now and then I’m known to make a mistake,’ said Romney. ‘I did not make a mistake with this guy.’
A devout Catholic, Ryan has voted against marriage equality and adoption by same-sex couples.
In his first speech as vice president nominee, he said: ‘Our rights come from nature and God, not from government.’
On Barack Obama’s campaign site on Ryan, it lists why the Romney/Ryan ticket would set the US’ progress back decades.
It says: ‘Ryan voted against the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which helps women fight for equal pay for equal work.
‘He voted against repealing the discriminatory policy of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, and supports writing discrimination into the Constitution by amending it to ban gay marriage.’
Ryan is perhaps best known for his controversial alternative budget in which he called for reducing pensions, cutting food aid, and bringing large changes to government-funded healthcare.
A spokesperson for the Obama campaign said: ‘The architect of the radical Republican House budget, Ryan, like Romney, proposed an additional $250,000 (£159,509, €203,607) tax cut for millionaires, and deep cuts in education from Head Start to college aid.
‘His plan also would end Medicare as we know it by turning it into a voucher system, shifting thousands of dollars in health care costs to seniors.
‘As a member of Congress, Ryan rubber-stamped the reckless Bush economic policies that exploded our deficit and crashed our economy. Now the Romney-Ryan ticket would take us back by repeating the same, catastrophic mistakes.’
In response to the Republican ticket, the Democrats added marriage equality to the party’s national platform.
The Human Rights Group also criticized the politician, with the president Chad Griffin saying: ‘Ryan’s record of voting against fairness, dignity and equality is out of touch with the majority of Americans and a fast growing majority of Republicans.
‘LGBT Americans need leadership that will continue to fight for their rights to protect their families, marry the person they love, and enjoy equal protections under the law.’
Ryan has earned a 0% rating from the Human Rights Campaign, and a 90% rating from anti-gay hate group Family Research Council when he voted for 9 out of the 10 actions FRC supported.