Just last week, I commented to a colleague that I felt that the Family Research Council was becoming increasingly radical in its opposition to all things gay, pointing to this press release announcing that “homosexuals in the military are three times more likely to commit sexual assaults than heterosexuals.”
It was not surprising that this “analysis” was carried out by the FRC’s Peter Sprigg, who has long been the most vocally anti-gay leader at the organization and who recently declared that he wanted to see gays behavior criminalized. But on the whole, FRC had traditionally tried to present a more moderate (relatively speaking) face when it came to opposing the so-called “gay agenda,” even forcing Sprigg to apologize a few years back when he said he wanted to see gays exported from the country.
And I have to say that I am honestly quite amazed by the scoop posted last night by Joe Jervis showing that FRC actually lobbied members of Congress to vote against a resolution denouncing Uganda’s “kill the gays” legislation:
According to the FRC’s official lobbying report for the first quarter of 2010, they paid two of their henchmen $25,000 to lobby Congress against approving a resolution denouncing Uganda’s plan to execute homosexuals. The resolution passed in the Senate on April 13th, but remains languishing in the House almost four months after being referred to the Foreign Affairs Committee. Did the FRC’s lobbying kill it?
As far as I have been able to tell, FRC hasn’t commented on this yet, but I am really hoping that someone can get them to go on the record to explain why the organization would be lobbying against this because, quite frankly, this is unbelievable.
UPDATE: Warren Throckmorton has gotten a statement (of sorts) from FRC:
Tom McClusky is listed as one of the two lobbyists and so I contacted him to ask how FRC lobbied and with whom. While he declined to say which members were lobbied, he said, “We didn’t necessarily lobby against or for the resolution but tried to work with offices to make the language more neutral on homosexuality.” He added his recollection was that “the original language was incorrect on what Uganda was doing as well.” McClusky said the lobbying took place before the resolution was introduced but did not say what, if anything, was altered as the result of their efforts. As for the Ugandan bill, he said that the FRC has never taken a position on the death penalty. Regarding H.Res. 1064, he added, “We have not taken a public position on the current resolution.
UPDATE II: David Weigel got an official explanation from FRC:
Inaccurate internet reports have been circulating indicating that the Family Research Council lobbied “against” a congressional resolution condemning a bill proposed in Uganda. The Uganda bill would have provided for the death penalty for something called “aggravated homosexuality.” Unfortunately, those spreading these false rumors deliberately failed to obtain the facts first.
FRC did not lobby against or oppose passage of the congressional resolution. FRC’s efforts, at the request of Congressional offices, were limited to seeking changes in the language of proposed drafts of the resolution, in order to make it more factually accurate regarding the content of the Uganda bill, and to remove sweeping and inaccurate assertions that homosexual conduct is internationally recognized as a fundamental human right.
FRC does not support the Uganda bill, and does not support the death penalty for homosexuality — nor any other penalty which would have the effect of inhibiting compassionate pastoral, psychological and medical care and treatment for those who experience same-sex attractions or who engage in homosexual conduct.