U.S. presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich this week said legalizing marriage for gays and lesbians is an example of paganism’s rise.
Gingrich made the comment in a conference call with Christian right leaders aiding his campaign for the GOP presidential nomination.
“It's pretty simple: marriage is between a man and a woman,” said Gingrich, who has been married three times, divorced twice and had at least two adulterous affairs. “This is a historic doctrine driven deep into the Bible, both in the Old Testament and in the New Testament, and it's a perfect example of what I mean by the rise of paganism. The effort to create alternatives to marriage between a man and a woman are perfectly natural pagan behaviors, but they are a fundamental violation of our civilization.”
Gingrich went on to say that he and third wife Callista volunteered to serve their country knowing they’d have to suffer “news media assaults” and “vicious gossip.”
“We both concluded that we had a moral obligation to endure whatever comes and to at least offer, as citizens, to try and be of service,” said Gingrich, whose next contest is on Jan. 31 in Florida.
The conference call included Mat Staver, Jim Garlow, George Barna and Don Wildmon, all members of Gingrich’s Faith Coalition and influential leaders on the Christian right.
Garlow, on the stakes in the 2012 election, said, “At the risk of sounding melodramatic, the United States as we know her will cease to exist as will, then, Western Civilization.”