Pence Once Blamed Rise of AIDS On Anal Sex

Mike Pence (Gage Skidmore)
Mike Pence (Gage Skidmore)

By Hamish Balfour

Before Mike Pence was a congressman and Indiana governor, he had a career in talk radio. And that’s coming back to haunt him now he’s Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s running mate.

As governor, Pence is known for passing anti-gay legislation and the roots of that may have been in some of the comments he made as a talk show host. The Business Standard News found audio of an old Pence show where he blamed gays for the spread of HIV/AIDS.

“Before the rise of the gay culture we never had diseases like AIDS,” said Pence. “I blame the spread of AIDS on anal sex and other unnatural sex acts.”

The website LGBTQ Nation detailed some of Pence’s anti-gay initiatives, such as trying to divert federal HIV prevention dollars to support conversion therapy programs in 2000. According to Pence’s website, federal money should go to organizations, “which provide assistance to those seeking to change their sexual behavior.”

Conversion therapy, which tries to get gay people to live heterosexual lives, has been discredited by psychologists and is banned in California.

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