Presidential hopeful Rick Santorum has suggested he supports government-back discrimination against LGBT people.

The former Pennsylvania senator made his remarks on Wednesday at a Spartanburg, Iowa campaign stop, the Patch reported.

“What I believe is that government should have a bias,” he told a spartan crowd that had gathered in a homeless shelter, “a bias in favor of what is best for society. A bias in favor of what is proven to be best for children, which is the future of society.”

“Individuals don't live alone, individuals don't function alone, they function in a unit that builds something that can be a foundation. And that is the family,” he added. (The video is embedded in the right panel of this page.)

Santorum and Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann are the only GOP candidates to have signed the Iowa-based Christian conservative The Family Leader's anti-gay marriage pledge. Both vigorously oppose gay rights and are heavily courting Iowa's Christian conservative vote.

Bachmann, however, has toned down her anti-gay rhetoric since officially entering the race, and has refused to answer allegations that her husband, Marcus Bachmann, seeks to “cure” gay people at his family clinics.