Iowa State Senator Dennis Guth, a Republican, has defended saying that gays pose a “health risk” to his family, calling it the “truth.”

During the Senate's opening session, Guth shocked colleagues with an anti-gay rant.

“The media, for the most part, has bamboozled us into thinking that having a relationship outside of the boundaries of monogamous, heterosexual marriage is positive, happy and fulfilling,” Guth said. “Movies, television shows, articles and magazines abound with this theme, giving partial information to [a] vulnerable audience: Our children.”

“Just as there are multiple ways that your smoking hurts me, such as second-hand smoke, so it is with same-sex relationships. There are health risks that my family incurs because of the increase of sexually transmitted infections that this lifestyle invites. For example, there are more and more medical tests required before giving blood or giving birth,” he added.

Democratic Senator Matt McCoy, who is openly gay, condemned Guth's comments, calling them “ignorant.”

“What I heard today was ignorant and I know where it came from. I am not gay by choice, but I choose not to be ignorant,” he added, possibly referring to 2010 remarks made by Chuck Hurley, president of the Christian conservative Iowa Family Policy Center.

In calling on lawmakers to approve a constitutional amendment which sought to define marriage as a heterosexual union, Hurley stated that the secondhand impact of gay relationships are more destructive than smoking.

In speaking to the Des Moines Register, Guth defended his comments, saying he's received positive feedback from GOP colleagues he's spoken to.

“And I've had some very vehement opposition as well,” Guth said. “Those sorts of things are offending, but I think the truth needs to be had. And I'm willing to stand up and continue delivering the truth.”

“Senator McCoy accused me of being ignorant. I don't quite understand that comment. I had my information coming from the same website that he said he was getting his information from. So, I guess I don't quite understand the ignorant accusation.”