Republican state Senate candidate Tim McGhee is accused of attacking gay people in comments he made at a candidate forum hosted by the Arlington Gay and Lesbian Alliance in Arlington's Ballston neighborhood Tuesday night.
The liberal Virginia politics blog Not Larry Sabato has audio transcript of McGhee’s closing statement from Tuesday’s forum. Both were posted Wednesday under the headline, “Republican Senate Candidate Goes To Gay Forum And Attacks Gays.”
In a conversation with Patch, McGhee said his remarks were “not meant as an attack.”
“It was a personal view, and I was reaching out on my perspective of scripture and life,” McGhee said. “It was meant to be an added perspective on who God is and his mercy.”
McGhee said he tailored his closing remarks specifically for the forum.
According to Not Larry Sabato, McGhee’s remarks included the following:
“For some of you here this evening, your frustrations go way beyond a state senate candidate. Some of you are beyond frustrated with God right now. Some of you refuse to believe in him altogether. You’ve asked the question or perhaps given up asking a long time ago. ‘Why? Why would God make me who I am and then tell me that’s wrong?’
“May I put a question before you tonight? What if that’s exactly what God did? What if that’s exactly what God had to do to fully demonstrate who he is?”
After these remarks, McGhee quoted scripture.
Ebbin, who has served in the House of Delegates representing the 49th District since 2003, is the only openly gay member of Virginia's General Assembly.
“[McGhee’s remarks] certainly were offensive,” Ebbin told Patch. “They were ignorant and offensive. The rhetoric was just shocking for 2011 and that people would think that way.”
The Not Larry Sabato blog post was tweeted by MSNBC television personality Rachel Maddow on Wednesday afternoon.