Tomorrow, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) will appear before the Iowa FAMiLY Leader, the radical anti-LGBT group headed by Bob Vander Plaats, as she lays the groundwork for a potential presidential campaign. As ThinkProgress reported Friday, the FAMiLY Leader and Vander Plaats himself hold some abhorrent views about homosexuality, including the belief that it is a “public health risk” along the lines of secondhand smoke.
According to CNN, Bachmann’s first hire in her presidential campaign will likely be Iowa State Senator Kent Sorenson (R), who will serve as her state political director. Sorenson gained notoriety as the author of Iowa’s “birther bill” requiring “birth certificates to be filed with affidavits of candidacy for presidential and vice presidential candidates.”
Given the fact that Bachmann’s cozying up to the FAMiLY Leader, ThinkProgress caught up with her planned political director to get his thoughts about the ideas being pushed by Vander Plaats’s group. In a surprise move, Sorenson sharply criticized the notion that homosexuality is a “public health problem” akin to secondhand smoke, calling the argument “absurd.” Sorenson went on to declare that “I would never make that argument and I haven’t heard anybody in Iowa make that argument”:
KEYES: There’s been a lot of debate that it [homosexuality] is almost a public health problem, akin almost to secondhand smoke.
SORENSON: I think that’s absurd. [...] I would never make that argument and I haven’t heard anybody in Iowa make that argument, so I’m not sure where you’re coming up with that from.
It’s important to note that Sorenson is only speaking for himself in this capacity, not Bachmann. Still, as the Minnesota Republican seeks the backing of the FAMiLY Leader and its supporters tomorrow, it is worth asking: does Bachmann agree with the Iowa FAMiLY Leader that homosexuality is a “public health risk” akin to secondhand smoke, or does she agree with her political director who called this claim “absurd”?