A Republican congressional candidate has lamented passage of an ordinance in Cuyahoga County protecting LGBT persons from discrimination.

Last week, Cuyahoga County Council approved an ordinance that prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in the areas of housing, employment and public accommodations. The measure establishes a three-person commission to investigate discrimination complaints. Fines collected will be used to fund an awareness campaign.

(Related: Cuyahoga County, which includes Cleveland, okays LGBT protections.)

Cuyahoga County is Ohio's second most populous county, as of 2016, and its county seat is Cleveland.

Beverly Goldstein, the Republican candidate vying for Ohio Representative Marcia Fudge's seat, described passage of the ordinance as “awful,” and linked its passage to Cleveland's illiteracy rate.

“AWFUL CUYAHOGA OUTCOME [Human Rights Commission] 2 be created,” Goldstein tweeted. “Must launch effective legal challenge. Shout out: hubby Michael testified. Outcome directly tied 2 CLE 66% adult illiteracy. If CCC had LITERATE inner-city church-attending Black voters following this issue=entirely opposite outcome.”

Fudge called Goldstein's remarks “ill-informed, racist and homophobic,” according to Cleveland.com.

Goldstein's husband, attorney Michael Goldstein, expanded on his wife's remarks, saying that “the problem is illiteracy, not race. Race is not the issue.”

He went on to say that the law would allow male sex offenders to masquerade as women and enter women's bathrooms, a common trope used by opponents of allowing transgender people to use the bathroom of their choice.

“If most of them understood that this ordinance would allow transgender males, or sex offenders who masquerade as transgender males, to use women's bathrooms regularly used by mothers and daughters, thereby endangering the safety of girls and women, they probably would have brought pressure to bear on their elected county representatives not to bring the resolution in the first place," Michael Goldstein said. "But those who cannot read cannot be expected to know about the negative effects of the resolution."

Beverly Goldstein also challenged Fudge in 2016. In that contest, Fudge easily won re-election with 80.3 percent of the vote.