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Mike Pence suddenly wants the record to reflect that he never promoted so-called “conversion therapy” or “reparative therapy,” the completely discredited and dangerous practice of trying to alter people’s sexual orientation or gender identity. This is a flat-out lie.
Let’s review what Pence put on his campaign website in 2000:
Congress should support the reauthorization of the Ryan White Care Act only after completion of an audit to ensure that federal dollars were no longer being given to organizations that celebrate and encourage the types of behaviors that facilitate the spreading of the HIV virus. Resources should be directed toward those institutions which provide assistance to those seeking to change their sexual behavior.
Now Pence’s spokesperson, Marc Lotter, is claiming that he never supported the practice. The New York Times writes:
Mr. Pence had not addressed speculation about his support for conversion therapy until last weekend, when Mr. Lotter told The Times it was “patently false” that Mr. Pence “supported or advocated” the practice.
Lotter said Pence simply wanted the money directed to “groups that promoted safe sexual practices.” Talk about “patently false.” First of all, what did Pence think all those AIDS organizations receiving federal funds were doing? They were promoting safe sex, idiot—as in using condoms.
Second, the notion that Pence was talking about safe sex when he said “those seeking to change their sexual behavior” is at once laughable and craven.
Pence didn’t even know what safe sex was. He’s the guy who in 2002 called condom use “too modern” and “a very, very poor protection against sexually transmitted diseases.” In that same interview, Pence told CNN he believed the “only true safe sex” was “no sex.”
Sorry, Mike. You couldn’t have been promoting “safe sexual practices” when you a) didn’t believe in them, and b) didn’t even know what they were.