U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio to headline anti-gay fundraiser

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.)

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.)

The Florida Family Policy Council (FFPC) announced today that it will host U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) at its 2013 Annual Policy Awards Dinner in Orlando on Saturday.

The FFPC is led by John Stemberger, the anti-gay activist who most recently helped launch a Boy Scouts splinter group that will ban openly gay youth, and the fundraiser will honor Liberty Counsel head Mat Staver.

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.)

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.)

Stemberger and Staver are far outside of the mainstream, but with Rubio preparing for a possible presidential run in 2016 he may use this event, much like his speech at the Values Voter Summit, to soothe any doubts about his right-wing credentials.

Stemberger previously chaired Florida for Marriage, which spearheaded the campaign to pass a state constitutional amendment banning same-sex unions, and founded the anti-gay Boy Scout alternative Trail Life USA. Earlier in his career as a lawyer, he was widely criticized for misconduct in the Rifqa Barry case.

Stemberger has a long record of incendiary anti-gay rhetoric. He:

We noted Staver’s radicalism and involvement in a kidnapping case in our profile of him for the 2013 Values Voter Summit:

Mat Staver is the head of the Liberty University School of Law and its legal affiliate, Liberty Counsel, a sponsor of the Values Voter Summit. Liberty Counsel has beenimplicated in the Lisa Miller kidnapping case, where a client kidnapped her daughter and fled to Central America after a court granted custody to her former partner.

At a previous Values Voter Summit, Staver claimed that progressives are using LGBT rights and secular government in order to “ultimately implode America” and that the “agenda of the homosexual movement” is to destroy freedom and western civilization.

Through his role at Liberty Counsel, Staver has:

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