Dean Condemns Senator Santorum's Offensive Remarks

April 23, 2003

Yesterday, I called on President Bush and the Republican Party leadership to condemn Senator Rick Santorum for his deeply offensive remarks comparing homosexuality to bigamy, polygamy, incest and adultery. As additional reports have come to light, revealing a disturbing history of inflammatory, anti-gay rhetoric by Senator Santorum, the deafening silence of President Bush and his party has become inexcusable.

Sen. Santorum has refused to apologize for his repugnant remarks, calling his comments "a legitimate public policy discussion." Gay-bashing is not a legitimate public policy discussion; it is immoral. Rick Santorum's failure to recognize that attacking people because of who they are is morally wrong makes him unfit for a leadership position in the United States Senate. Today I call on Rick Santorum to resign from his post as Republican Conference Chairman.

Once again, I call on President Bush to repudiate Sen. Santorum's remarks. The President of the United States must represent all Americans, regardless of race, gender, class or sexual orientation. In a nation dedicated to equality under the law, everyone must be equal under the law. By refusing to stand up for gay Americans under attack by members of his own party's leadership, this President sends a message that intolerance and bigotry is acceptable. That is not acceptable.

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