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March 29th, 2013

Pastors, Legislators Speak Out on Attacks From LGBTQ Conference Speakers

Two dozen Iowa pastors, legislators and conservative activists gathered for a press conference Thursday to express their opposition to some of the planned workshops for the 8th Annual Governor’s Conference on LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender or Questioning) Youth. The conference, supposedly aimed at preventing bullying of those youngsters, features a workshop conducted by the executive director of the liberal Progress Iowa group, which is an attack dog for the Iowa Democratic Party.

As noted on on Tuesday, Progress Iowa called Governor Branstad its 2012 “Turkey of the Year”. For that reason and others, some conservatives are asking Governor Branstad to remove the use of his title from the conference.

“Governor, in all honesty, these people are using your good name to lend legitimacy to their agenda,” said Pastor Kerry Jech of Marshalltown. “Not only have some of its participants attacked you personally, but the tone of the workshops misrepresents the beliefs of Christians.”

The press conference also included an announcement that 16 Republican legislators would vote to withhold taxpayer funding from Des Moines Area Community College unless they removed their sponsorship from the event.

“We cannot give in good conscience vote to give taxpayer dollars to people or groups who pervert the Bible, teach our youth to engage in dangerous behavior and target individuals like Jan Mickelson for hatred and bullying,” said Sen. Dennis Guth (R-Klemme).

The 16 legislators who signed the statement are Iowa Senators Bill Anderson, Rick Bertrand, Mark Chelgren, David Johnson, Dennis Guth, Mark Segebart and Kent Sorenson, as well as state Reps. Dwayne Alons, Robert Bacon, Dean Fisher, Greg Heartsill, Sandy Salmon, Tom Shaw, Jason Schultz, Larry Sheets and Ralph Watts.

The Family Leader Vice-President Chuck Hurley denounced the LGBTQ conference organizers for focusing their event not on bullying, but on promoting alternative lifestyles to children.

“This papa bear is here to say regarding the governor’s conference: Stop coming after my kids and other people’s kids. It’s evil propaganda,” Hurley said. “Stop twisting the Bible and stop using our tax dollars to do it.”

You can view a montage of the media conference below:

About the Author

Kevin Hall
Kevin Hall brings almost two decades of journalistic experience to TheIowaRepublican. Starting in college as a radio broadcaster, Hall eventually became a television anchor/reporter for stations in North Carolina, Missouri, and Iowa. During the 2007 caucus cycle, Hall changed careers and joined the political realm. He was the northwest Iowa field director for Fred Thompson's presidential campaign. Hall helped Terry Branstad return to the governor's office by organizing southwest Iowa for Branstad's 2010 campaign. Hall serves as a reporter/columnist for

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