Former GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum has said he does not believe his opposition to gay rights is “hateful rhetoric.”

When confronted by Abby Martin of, Santorum called his opposition a “public policy discussion.”

“You said during your campaign that homosexual parents … that kids don't thrive under homosexual parents, but actually studies have shown that kids thrive equally under homosexual parents as they do under straight parents. Do you think this hateful rhetoric … you know, you're fighting a losing battle here as homosexuality is more accepted by the day.”

“I don't think it's hateful rhetoric,” Santorum answered as he continued walking down a hall. “I think having public policy discussions is not hateful rhetoric. I think ...”

“But It's incorrect,” Martin interrupted.

“I think characterizing it as such is a typical tactic [by] those who do not want to have a real discussion about the issues,” he added as he boarded an escalator leaving Martin behind. (The video is embedded in the right panel of this page. Visit our video library for more videos.)