Mike Huckabee appeared last week on Dave Garrison’s “Faith & Liberty” radio show, where he spoke about his new book, “God, Guns, Grits and Gravy.” Garrison told Huckabee that he was upset about how Right Wing Watch and others covered remarks that Michele Bachmann made on his show accusing gay people of seeking to “freely prey on little children sexually,” pointing to it as proof of growing “intolerance” among gay rights supporters.
The former Arkansas governor said that if he were elected president, he would use his bully pulpit to promote opposition to marriage equality, just as President Obama became “the leader cheerleader” for gay rights.
“Even though he didn’t call the family of Chris Kyle, the ‘American Sniper,’ when he was killed for all he had done for his country, he picks up the phone and calls an NFL football player and congratulates him for being homosexual,” he said. “How bizarre is that?”
“Since the president ‘came out,’ so to speak, you see court after court suddenly deciding that same-sex marriage is just fine; I’m convinced that it’s the president having given this legitimacy and sense of authority to the issue that has changed the debate,” he added, before once again claiming that governors and legislators can simply refuse to enforce federal court rulings on marriage equality.
Huckabee also rebuked Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy for walking back comments condemning homosexuality, calling it a “huge disappointment” that Cathy caved to pro-gay “economic terrorism.”
“I felt that it was a gut-punch to all those people who had stood by him that in the end he capitulated to those forces promoting same-sex marriage,” Huckabee said.
But Gov. Christie isn’t the only possible Republican presidential hopeful to have flirted with anti-vaccination conspiracy theories or happily promoted groups that do the same.
The episode is reminiscent of the 2012 GOP presidential nomination contest, when candidates piled on Rick Perry for mandating that female students in Texas receive an HPV vaccine, a stance for which he has since apologized. Rep. Michele Bachmann took the criticism of Perry even farther, baselessly charging that the vaccine causes mental retardation.
In addition, a number of top GOP presidential contenders, including Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum have promoted Eagle Forum, the conservative organization founded by right-wing icon Phyllis Schlafly, which regularly pushes false claims about vaccines.
Eagle Forum is such a favorite of the Republican establishment that Schlafly received a lifetime achievement award — presented by Bachmann — at the 2011 Conservative Political Action Conference.
An entire section of Eagle Forum’s website is devoted to criticizing vaccines. The group hasrepeatedlypromoted the myth that vaccines are linked to autism, featuring articles on its website about how efforts to vaccinate children are a form of government control that jeopardizes the freedoms of parents and families.
Along with its own misinformation, Eagle Forum refers members to anti-vaccine groups such as the National Vaccine Information Center and the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, which counted Rand Paul as a member for over two decades. Back in 2000, the group promoted a letter [PDF] to the Department of Health and Human Services from then-Rep. Dan Burton, R-Ind., which suggested that vaccines are responsible for an increase in autism diagnoses.
In 2012, Schlafly praised California parents who refused to vaccine their children, attacking a member of the state assembly who wanted to pass a law requiring parents consult with a pediatrician before they make a decision on whether their child receives a vaccination.
Schlafly’s anti-vaccine activism is unlikely to cost her any support from the Republican ranks, who are even more likely to seek support from her and her organization as the GOP nomination contest moves into high gear.
Harris told his congregation that the majority of Americans oppose the legalization of same-sex marriage and abortion but the media are shutting out such conservative views, while judges, such as the one who struck down North Carolina’s ban on gay marriage, are unilaterally “changing the will of the people.”
“Ladies and gentlemen, we cannot believe the lies that will be fed,” Harris said. “Listen, everybody else is coming out of the closet, maybe we need to come out of the closet.”
Pat Robertson appears to be convinced that President Obama isasecretMuslim, telling “700 Club” viewers today that the president is in on an Islamist plot to take over the entire world and impose Sharia across the globe.
After comparing Islam to Nazism, Robertson said that people need to know that Islam is not a religion but a political movement bent on world domination, and Obama is helping this effort.
“It’s time our president opened his eyes, but I think maybe he already knows because he went to one of those schools over in Indonesia and he’s been drinking pretty heavily of the Kool-Aid,” he said.
RWW’s Paranoia-Ramatakes a look at five of the week’s most absurd conspiracy theories from the Right.
According to the right-wing media, Sharia law is gaining a foothold in Michigan, President Obama is blocking the sale of miracle drugs and Satan is commanding the gay rights movement. But Sarah Palin has uncovered the most menacing threat to America of them all: criticism of Sarah Palin.
According to Media Matters, one email to Erickson’s list claimed that the federal government is suppressing a miracle cancer cure that healed Ronald Reagan. Another warned that President Obama and the FDA could kill “over 45 million Americans…including you” because they are refusing to release a “secret” cure to cancer, heart disease and Alzheimer’s.
But 45 million deaths is low compared to the potential toll of another “Obama scandal” that a RedState sponsored email warned could “wipe out 281 million Americans.”
4) Fox News Helping … Hillary?
At least according to Sarah Palin. Upset that Fox News host Bill O’Reilly mocked the prospect of Palin and fellow reality television star Donald Trump running for president as a “reality show,” Palin charged that O’Reilly is trying to undermine the conservative movement just as it prepares to take on Hillary Clinton.
Palin fumed that “quasi-right” media outlets like Fox News should wake up to the fact that “this is a war” against Clinton and should help the GOP unify and “surface the competitor who can take on Hillary or whomever it may be and win for this country.”
Perkins recently spoke with Frank Gaffney, a fellow anti-Muslimconspiracytheorist, about the supposed rise of Sharia law in the U.S., and unsurprisingly, Gaffney joined in on the frenzy and referred to the city as “Dearbornistan.” He said the “Muslim-only” city of Dearborn has become a “ghetto” that is “too dangerous” to enter.
This might be news to the city’s residents, including one Army veteran who was able to find no shortage of stores selling haram goods like ham and liquor, along with a gentleman’s club, despite the claims of right-wing activists that the city is now imposing Sharia law.
2) Marriage Equality Turns Kids Into Government Property
A group of Catholic and Protestant leaders signed a statement this week warning that the legalization of same-sex marriage will lead “to the coercion and persecution of those who refuse to acknowledge the state’s redefinition of marriage, which is beyond the state’s competence.”
Signatories, including National Organization for Marriage founder Maggie Gallagher and prominent Proposition 8 supporter Rick Warren, warned that marriage equality for same-sex couples represents an even “graver threat” to society than divorce “because what is now given the name of marriage in law is a parody of marriage.”
By legalizing same-sex marriage, the statement reads, “a kind of alchemy is performed, not merely on the institution, but on human nature itself,” since same-sex marriage apparently “disregards the created order, threatens the common good and distorts the Gospel.” The statement even claims that marriage equality will turn children “in important legal respects, the property of the state.”
1) Gay Demonic Energy
American Family Radio host Bryan Fischer thinks that Satan makes people gay, so of course Fischer believes that Satan is also in command of the gay rights movement.
“I don’t think you will ever find a more directly demonic energy than when you deal with the homosexual agenda,” Fischer said this week. “They’re vicious. They are mean. You literally are staring into virtually the unvarnished energy of Satan himself when you come up against the forces that are pushing the homosexual agenda forward.”
Upset with the coverage of his comments, Fischer said that he feels bad for gay people, since they are “captives, prisoners of war” of Satan.
Marino told Gaffney that America needs a president who is “not going to step back and allow this kind of activity to take place in our court rooms.”
“We need conservative judges, we need a conservative president who will appoint conservative justices to the Supreme Court and to the appellate court and the district court as well where this issue can be snuffed out immediately when the defendant tries to raise the issue,” Marino said.
In January of last year, Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore denounced the decriminalization of sodomy and the separation of church in state in a speech to Pro-Life Mississippi and Pastors for Life in Jackson, Mississippi. Moore, who first received national attention when he lost his post for refusing to obey a court order to remove a Ten Commandments monument he erected in a courthouse rotunda, recently urged Alabama to flout a federal court’s decision finding that the state’s ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional.
Moore’s understanding of the Constitution is pretty well summed up by his belief that Christianity and the Bible should have privileged roles in U.S. government because “they didn’t bring a Quran over on the Pilgrim ship, the Mayflower.”
Upset that the military was allowing “two men getting married in a chapel,” Moore said that America is forgetting about God and only turning to public worship “when we get in trouble, when they bombed the Twin Towers.”
“They don’t acknowledge Buddha,” Moore said of elected officials. “Buddha didn’t create us, Mohammad didn’t create us.”
Moore, who once described homosexuality as a “criminal lifestyle,” also criticized the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down bans “sodomy” bans in Lawrence v. Texas.
He said that the “abominations” of gay rights and legal abortion are now putting America in direct confrontation with God.
Perkins invited Dan Gainor of the conservative Media Research Center onto his “Washington Watch” radio program to discuss reports that Savage will have a new show on ABC, and the two fumed at the news.
“How in the world can ABC think that this will fly?” Perkins asked. Gainor warned that Savage’s new project “will be like Glee was to the gay agenda,” describing Savage as “one of the most well-known vicious, hating individuals in the world.”
“It is something you would expect from the old Soviet Union,” Gianor added.
Mike Huckabee stopped by the American Family Association’s radio network today to denounce the Obama administration as “incapable of knowing the difference between good and evil” in the fight against extremist groups.
The former governor and likely presidential candidate told Kevin McCullough of “AFA Today” that the Obama administration is “bending over backwards to do everything possible to accommodate Muslims but they don’t mind stomping all over Christians and they do it regularly. This is just the most astonishing reversal of true American tradition that I’ve ever seen.”
Sandy Rios, the American Family Association’s director of governmental affairs, said today that criticism of her organization’s role in financing a Republican National Committee trip to Israel is unfounded because Israel “could not have a better ally” than the AFA … despite the fact that God disapproves of the country’s “secular government” and is not “fond of atheist Jews” who live there.
“In terms of our teachings and our biblical understanding there could not be any more strong support for Israel than you find among people who understand and believe in the Bible and believe that God’s hand is on Israel, in spite of what’s happening there, in spite of its government,” she said. She mocked the notion “that God is in favor of a secular government or that God is fond of atheist Jews who occupy the land in Israel.”
“It is His land and I believe He will reclaim it in time,” Rios said.