Mitt Romney's and Rick Santorum's gay
rights statements have been called out by the Human
Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation's largest gay rights advocate.
Romney and Santorum said during
Sunday's NBC News-Facebook GOP presidential debate that they
are opposed to discrimination based on sexual orientation.
“I made it very clear we should not
discriminate in hiring policies, in legal policies,” Romney
answered when asked about his 1994 statement in support of gay
Santorum echoed a similar sentiment,
but added that he opposes gay marriage and the adoption of children
by gay couples.
HRC took exception to the comments in a
statement released after the debate.
“Both Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum
have signed the National Organization for Marriage's extremist
anti-LGBT pledge,” the group said. “According to the pledge,
Romney and Santorum, if elected, would set-up a McCarthy-like
commission to investigate alleged incidents of 'harassment' against
NOM's supporters, defend the discriminatory Defense of Marriage Act
(DOMA), push for a federal marriage amendment and appoint anti-gay
“Romney's record on protections for
LGBT Americans does not match his rhetoric,” the group added,
noting that the GOP candidate opposes federal workplace protections
for gay workers and repeal of “Don't Ask, Don't Tell.”
The group added that Santorum's
anti-gay “vitriol has become his life's work.”