Ted Haggard: If I were 21 today, I would identify as bisexual

In a wide-ranging interview with GQ, the Reverend Ted Haggard, former pastor of the New Life Church in Colorado Springs, talks about his ministry, his family and, yes, his sex life. He also poses for beefcake photos. It’s a very late-21st-century effort to rehabilitate his image.

For the first time since we’ve met, Ted isn’t looking directly at me. “Here’s where I really am on this issue,” he half whispers. “I think that probably, if I were 21 in this society, I would identify myself as a bisexual.” After a weekend of Ted trying to convince me of his unambiguous devotion to his wife and kids, I’m at first too surprised to say anything.

“So why not now?” I ask finally.

“Because, Kevin, I’m 54, with children, with a belief system, and I can have enforced boundaries in my life. Just like you’re a heterosexual but you don’t have sex with every woman that you’re attracted to, so I can be who I am and exclusively have sex with my wife and be perfectly satisfied.”

Remember, Haggard was once leader of a national organization of evangelicals and had weekly phone calls with the White House. Mike Jones, the man who exposed Haggard’s double life as a minister who took drugs and paid for sex, said if he had it to do over again, he wouldn’t. “It ruined my life too,” he said.

Much of the lengthy GQ article is frankly too racy for us, but you can read a mainstreamed take on the whole sordid affair at The Denver Post.

Scot Kersgaard has been managing editor of a political newspaper, editor and co-owner of a ski town newspaper, executive editor of eight high-tech magazines (where he worked with current Apple CEO Tim Cook), deputy press secretary to a U.S. Senator, and an outdoors columnist at the Rocky Mountain News. He has an English degree from the University of Washington. He was awarded a fellowship to study internet journalism at the University of Maryland's Knight Center for Specialized Journalism. He was student body president in college. He spends his free time hiking and skiing.