Tim Pawlenty: Unsure whether being gay is a choice

By Kase Wickman
Sunday, July 10, 2011 16:11 EDT
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Republican presidential candidate and former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty appeared on “Meet the Press” and was interviewed by David Gregory Sunday morning, where he said that whether a person could be born gay is “in dispute” by scientific researchers.

Pawlenty signed onto the conservative pledge to ban same-sex marriage last week, around the same time he confessed to reporters that he liked Lady Gaga’s gay anthem “Born This Way.”

“So you think it’s not a choice?” Gregory asked after Pawlenty said that he would “defer to science” to answer the question. “That you are, as Lady Gaga says, born that way?”

“There’s no scientific conclusion that it’s genetic,” Pawlenty backtracked. “We don’t know that.”

ThinkProgress points out that Pawlenty is wrong:

The American Psychological Association, the world’s largest association of psychological professionals, describes sexual orientation as “a complex interaction of environmental, cognitive and biological factors.” There is considerable evidence to suggest that biology, “including genetic or inborn hormonal factors,” plays a significant role in a person’s sexuality.

In 2004, while he was governor, Pawlenty also signed onto a petition to support a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage.

Watch the video below, originally aired July 10 on NBC, embedded via YouTube.

(h/t: ThinkProgress)

Kase Wickman
Kase Wickman
Kase Wickman is a reporter for Raw Story. She holds a journalism degree from Boston University and grew up in Eugene, OR. Her work has been featured in The Boston Globe, Village Voice Media, The Christian Science Monitor, The Houston Chronicle and on NPR, among others. She lives in New York City and tweets from @kasewickman.
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