During a panel on ABC's This Week on Sunday, political commentator Cokie Roberts took on evangelicals Franklin Graham, Ralph Reed and Dr. Russell Moore on gay marriage and adoption.

When host Martha Raddatz asked Graham, son of evangelist Billy Graham, about comments he made in support of Russian President Vladimir Putin's crackdown on homosexuality, in particular prohibiting countries that have marriage equality from adopting Russian children, Graham suggested that gays “exploit” children.

“Putin is going to do what's right for Russia. And not what's right for America, but for Russia. We used to have a president in this country that did what's right for this country, but we don't seem to have that right now. Putin is going to make these decisions that he thinks are best for the Russian people. And he thinks that taking advantage of children – exploiting children – is wrong for any group, and they've passed a law.”

Reed, chairman of the Faith and Freedom Coalition, expanded on comments made by Moore of the Southern Baptist Convention. Moore rejected Putin's plan but stressed that he believes kids need a mom and dad.

“The social science on this is clear,” Reed said. “This isn't about Vladimir Putin. This is about what's best for children here in the United States. The social science is irrefutable. And it is that a child who grows up in a home without the mother and father present – and they both play a very unique procreative, nurturing and socializing role – they're 9 times more likely to end up dropping out of high school, they're 5 times more likely to end up in poverty, and they're 3 times ...”

Roberts interrupted to note that children who grow up in an orphanage fare worse than those raised in a home.

“And the fact that people are willing to take these children and raise them and raise them in a loving way is clearly better for these children,” Roberts said.

When Raddatz asked, “Would you rather a child sit in an orphanage and not have gay parents?” Reed answered that the social science is inconclusive.

“I think the law has every right to set an ideal. And the ideal is a mother and a father … ,” Reed started to say.

“The reason the numbers have changed so dramatically on [gay marriage], first of all that ideal isn't true in all kinds of families, the divorce rate being what it is and the abandoned mothers. But it is also true … if we got better men, we'd be in better shape,” Roberts said.

“People have come out of the closet and said, 'I am your brother. I am your sister.' And then they have seen these families raising children and see these loving families,” Roberts added.

Later, Graham asserted that gays can go to heaven, provided they repent for their sins.

“A lot of gay people feel they are sinners but not because they're gay,” Roberts responded. (The video is embedded on this page. Visit our video library for more videos.)