State Watch

West Virginia GOP chair praises state lawmaker’s op-ed on ‘shame of LGBTQ Pride’

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West Virginia Republican Party Chairwoman Melody Potter on Sunday praised an op-ed by a GOP state senator that condemned the LGBTQ movement, saying that the lawmaker showed “boldness” for taking a stand. 

“This op ed written by Senator Mike Michael Azinger is right on and is biblically based,” Potter says in a Facebook post that links to the Republican state lawmaker’s essay. “The comments at the end of the article from some readers are the typical about ‘not judging’ and ‘hate,’ the usual rhetoric. Thank you Senator for having the boldness to stand for what is right. More people should do the same. Thank you!”

The West Virginia GOP did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Hill. 

{mosads}The Parkersburg News and Sentinel on Sunday published an op-ed from Azinger entitled “The Shame of LGBTQ Pride.” In it, the legislator cites the local newspaper covering an LGBTQ event at the Parkersburg City Park as an example of sexual deviancy “going mainstream.”

He also argues that “tolerance, in the face of the violation of the commandments of God, is no virtue at all.”

“The left would have us believe we are ‘born that way;’ that sexuality is immutable,” Azinger writes. “This simply isn’t the case. The LGBQT movement is not about happiness and tolerance, but about indoctrination and a forced acceptance of a perverted and non-biblical view of sexuality.

“The solution to the madness of the LGBQT movement is not political correctness and tolerance; the answer is the Cross of Jesus Christ where we all can find forgiveness and salvation.”

Azinger told The Associated Press that he felt he needed to express his views following the event. 

“It came to my hometown so I feel like somebody has to speak up against it, being a senator or not, as a Christian I believe that it’s my duty to do so,” he said, adding that “this isn’t about hate, this is about a theological and philosophical disagreement of where we’re taking our culture.”

The op-ed from Azinger came amid Pride Month, which annually coincides with parades and festivities celebrating the LGBTQ community. 

They also came months after Republican state Del. Eric Porterfield made multiple derogatory remarks about LGBTQ people, including that they were a “modern day version of the Ku Klux Klan.”

Potter said in a statement at the time that Porterfield’s remarks were  “hateful” and “hurtful” and that they did “not reflect the values of our country, our state, and the Republican Party.”

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