Conservative Newt Gingrich has come to the defense of people offended by Michael Sam kissing his boyfriend on national television.

On Saturday, the 24-year-old Sam became the first openly gay football player drafted by the NFL after the All-American defensive end was picked by the St. Louis Rams in the seventh and final round of this year's draft.

ESPN broadcast the emotional moment when Sam received the call that he had been picked by the Rams. Sam tearfully reach for his boyfriend, Vito Cammisano, and the couple shared a kiss.

A day after Miami Dolphins safety Don Jones tweeted “OMG” and “Horrible,” the team fined him and ordered him to undergo sensitivity training. Jones apologized, saying in a statement that he wishes Sam “all the best in his NFL career.”

Derrick Ward, a former NFL player, was criticized for chiding ESPN for broadcasting the kiss. “U got little kids lookin at the draft,” he wrote.

“You guys talk about how you want to be inclusive,” Gingrich told CNN Crossfire co-host Van Jones and contributor Jamal Anderson. “It strikes me, that's repression, that's not inclusive.”

Gingrich characterized Ward and Jones as the victims: “Shouldn't you be teaching people who are gay to be open and understanding?”

Writing at Raw Story, Arturo Garcia noted that Gingrich ignored the barrage of homophobic messages Sam received on social media.

Gingrich described Sam breaking barriers in the NFL as a “fiasco” and suggested that he had not earned his spot in the draft.

“You've got this clever young guy who has manipulated the system brilliantly. Just watch the Visa commercial,” Gingrich said, a reference to a spot in which Sam asks to be judged by his performance on the field. (The video is embedded on this page. Visit our video library for more videos.)