Eric Porterfield, a Republican in the West Virginia House of Delegates, compared members of the LGBT community to the Ku Klux Klan on Friday amid facing threats and calls to resign over other recent bigoted remarks.
“The LGBT (community) is a modern day version of the Ku Klux Klan, without wearing hoods with their antics of hate,” Mr. Porterfield said in an interview Friday morning, Charleston’s Gazette-Mail reported.
Porterfield also called the gay community a “terrorist group” and claimed that he is being “persecuted” and is receiving “threatening” voicemails and social media messages after earlier remarks in a Wednesday committee meeting became public in which he supported an amendment that would overrule local ordinances that protect LGBT people from discrimination. The amendment failed.
“As legislators, I don’t think it’s our job to legislate behavior. This is discrimination against the First Amendment and religious liberty. The LGBT is the most socialist group in this country. They do not protect gays. There are many gays they persecute if they do not line up with their social ideology” (sic)
Some West VA. Republicans have criticized Porterfield’s comments. Del. Daniel Linville, R-Cabell, told the paper, “He’s wrong, very wrong. There’s just no excuse though for some of the things that he said.”
In a news release, the state Democratic Party Chairwoman Belinda Biafore called for Porterfield’s resignation.
Porterfield is refusing to resign and states that the controversy and his comments will boost his chances of re-election.