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Two men exchange kiss in protest at Santorum rally

By David Ferguson
Saturday, March 17, 2012 15:21 EDT
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Men kissing, image via Shutterstock
 
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Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum was 15 minutes into his speech at the Christian Liberty Academy in Arlington Heights, Illinois on Friday night when the two men rose from their seats and began to shout for the crowd’s attention. Then, said a report in the Niles-Morton Grove Patch newspaper, as security guards closed in on Timothy Tross of Lombard, Illinois, and Ben Clifford of Algonquin, the two men kissed.

“U.S.A.! U.S.A.!” chanted rally attendees as the protesters were led away.

When asked by the Patch if they were gay or if the kiss was a symbolic protest, Tross said, “I don’t think the message should be about what my sexuality is. It’s the message that he’s saying about sexuality that matters.”

The two men were part of a group of about 50 protesters who gathered at the Christian school, carrying signs with slogans like, “LGBT No H8″ and “Catholics against Santorum.” The protest was organized through a Facebook page started by activist Matt Muchowski called “Carmel Catholic Alumni Against Rick Santorum.”

Carmel is the Catholic high school that the presidential candidate graduated from in 1976.  The Patch quotes Muchowski as saying that the purpose of the protest is to “counter Santorum’s anti-gay hate, to set an example to students.  Rick sends a message of bullying, but we want high school students to know that other alumni send a message of equality.”

The Illinois primary takes place on Tuesday.  Rick Santorum currently neck in neck with front-runner Mitt Romney, besting him in the southern part of the state, but coming in slightly behind the former Massachusetts governor in the Chicago suburbs.

(hat-tip to Gawker)

Update: Here is video of the moment from Youtube on March 16, 2012. (Highlighted mark starts at 2:35).

Image (c)Shutterstock

David Ferguson
David Ferguson
David Ferguson is an editor at Raw Story. He was previously writer and radio producer in Athens, Georgia, hosting two shows for Georgia Public Broadcasting and blogging at Firedoglake.com and elsewhere. He is currently working on a book.
 
 
 
 
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