Republican presidential hopefuls Mike Huckabee, Ted Cruz and Bobby Jindal attended the National Religious Liberties Conference Friday (6 November) where organizer, Pastor Kevin Swanson, called for the death of gay people.
Swanson told the crowd in Des Moines, Iowa: ‘There are instances in which both the Old and New Testament speak to the matter with unbelievable clarity. You know what that sin is – it’s the sin of homosexuality. In fact in Romans 1 Paul affirms that this particular sin is worthy of death. The Old and New Testament, I believe both speak with authority and we outta receive it.’
Swanson has blamed natural disasters on homosexuality, claimed that Girl Scout cookies turn little girls into lesbians, and has urged people to hold up signs telling gay couples to die on their wedding day.
During his remarks on the first day of a two day event, he also gave some advice to parents of a gay child who invites them to their wedding.
‘What would you do if that was the case? Here is what I would do: sackcloth and ashes at the entrance to the church and I’d sit in cow manure and I’d spread it all over my body. That is what I would do.
‘And I’m not kidding, I’m not laughing. I’m grieving, I’m mourning, I’m pointing out the problem,’ Swanson said, screaming.
Former Arkansas Governor Huckabee, Texas Senator Cruz and Louisiana Governor Jindal have all repeatedly spoken out against gay marriage and often used anti-rhetoric. While Cruz is in the top five of most national polls of the large Republican field, Huckebee has struggled while Jindal has consistently finished near the bottom.
During his time on stage, Huckabee told the crowd that he would ignore the 26 June ruling by the US Supreme Court that made same-sex marriage legal in all 50 US states.