A prominent social conservative has condemned the recent gay marriage endorsements of Republicans Jim Petro and Ohio Senator Rob Portman.

Last week, Petro, Ohio's former attorney general, endorsed an effort to repeal Ohio's 2004 voter-approved constitutional amendment which prevents the state from recognizing any relationship other than a heterosexual marriage.

Petro cited his daughter's Massachusetts marriage to another woman in announcing that he had reversed his opposition to marriage equality.

“Seeing their happiness and realizing all the rights they would be denied in Ohio has proven to me the importance of equal marriage in our state,” Petro said.

In making his endorsement in March, Portman credited the coming out of his son Will for changing his position on the issue, though Portman has said that he does not plan to campaign in favor of changing Ohio's law.

In an email to supporters, Phil Burress, president of Citizens for Community Values (CCV), the group which backed the 2004 initiative, suggested that instead of supporting their children, Petro and Portman should have attempted to alter their sexuality from gay to straight.

“The vast majority of parents who discover that their child is homosexual do not respond the way Mr. Petro and Mr. Portman responded,” Burress wrote. “Most will continue to love their child but will speak the truth in love, explaining to them that homosexual sex is wrong.”

“Apparently, Mr. Petro and Mr. Portman are in the minority on this one. Due to a child's choice to act on their same-sex feelings, they want to force all Ohioans to accept their new flip-flopped position.”

Burress went on to promote the work of an “ex-gay” ministry that “helped people walk away from their same-sex attractions.”