WASHINGTON — Tony Perkins, president of the Washington-based Family Research Council, expressed support this week for parliamentarians in Uganda who are considering a measure that will impose harsher sanctions on LGBT people, as well as sentencing guidelines that could mean capital punishment for engaging in homosexual acts.
In a Twitter post on Monday, Perkins said, “American liberals are upset that Ugandan Pres is leading his nation in repentance — afraid of a modern example of a nation prospered by God.”
Human rights watchers immediately condemned Perkins for his remarks.
“Tony Perkins can’t claim that FRC isn’t a hate group, while at the same time support a bill that many believe would bring the death penalty to gay Ugandans,” said Fred Sainz, Vice President for Communications at the Human Rights Campaign (HRC).
The Southern Poverty Law Center classifies the FRC as an anti-gay “hate group” because of its history of spreading misinformation to the public about LGBT people.
As political leaders, led by Rebecca Kadaga, the Speaker of Uganda’s Parliament, press to pass the anti-gay measure, The Washington Blade reported that ranking U.S. officials met with high-profile leaders in Uganda “over the weekend” and raised concerns about the bill.
“As we have regularly said, we call on the parliament of Uganda to look very carefully at this because Uganda’s own Human Rights Council has made clear that if this were to pass, it would put the country out of compliance with its own international human rights obligations,” said State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland.
“And so, Assistant Secretary Carson had a chance to make that point again and our strong opposition to this, to the president, to the parliament and to key decision makers in Uganda,” she added
Sources at the State department have confirmed to LGBTQ Nation that there is no evidence that the measure’s supporters have removed the death penalty clause from the legislation as of Tuesday afternoon.