While the big religious right event in Washington, D.C., this weekend was Ralph Reed’s Faith & Freedom Conference, which drew a half-dozen presidential contenders, down the street, octogenarian religious right leader Phyllis Schlafly was hosting her own event for religious conservative college students. The Eagle Forum Collegians Summit, which featured a dozen members of Congress, was notable for a number of incendiary speeches given by those elected officials on the issue of gay marriage. The meeting was also attended by likely presidential candidate Michele Bachmann.
Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.) told the audience that the only purpose of marriage is to create children, which he says gay couples cannot do.
“The term ‘gay marriage’ is an oxymoron. Because marriage is a union and a bond between a man and a woman to do one thing: the furtherance of society by procreation, through creating new life,” he said. “Have you ever read the book America Alone by Mark Steyn? It’s about demographics. And if we continue with a cycle of debt and punishing our unborn then it just becomes a matter of time before you don’t have society.”
Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.) compared same-sex marriage to polygamy, incest and pedophilia.
For instance, you know, if you just care about somebody and you have a committed relationship, why not allow one man and two women, or three women to marry? There are a lot of people in this country that support polygamy. Why not? If they’re committed to each other, why should you care? Why not allow group marriage? There are people out there who want that. I think it’s call polyamory, it’s got some big name. But anyway, group marriage, I understand it. Well, is that the best policy? Why not allow an uncle to marry his niece? Why not allow a 50-year-old man to marry a 12-year-old girl if they love each other and they’re committed?
Blogger Deanna Candler gave a speech at the conference as well, complaining that as a conservative, she’s not treated fairly by her fellow students at Louisiana State University – Shreveport. “When I criticize Obama, I’m called a racist,” she said. “When I defend Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann, I’m called stupid.”
Rep. Michele Bachmann (Minn.) gave a speech from the balcony where she reiterated her claim that, given the nation’s level of debt and what the federal government may ask for in the coming decades, today’s young people will pay 75 percent of their income during peak earning years in taxes, a claim the Washington Post debunked in February.
Bachmann at the Eagle Forum Collegians Summit:
Also speaking at the conference, hosted at the headquarters of the Heritage Foundation, were Republican U.S. Reps. Tom Price of Georgia, Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, Tim Huelskamp of Kansas, Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, Jim Jordan of Ohio, Trent Franks of Arizona and Steve King of Iowa.