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Anderson Cooper dismantles TX Republican’s defense of discredited ‘ex-gay therapy’

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Anderson Cooper 061114 [CNN]

CNN host Anderson Cooper picked apart a Texas state legislator’s attempt on Wednesday to claim scientists were still debating the discredited gay “reparative” therapy advocated by his party platform, listing a litany of medical groups that have condemned it.

“It’s really just not accurate to say that doctors are evenly divided,” Cooper told state Rep. Bryan Hughes (R). “I could give you a list: the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Counseling Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association, the American School Counselors’ Association, the National Association of School Psychologists, National Association of Social Workers. They represent half a million mental health professionals, [and] they all say this is not a mental disorder. It’s not something that needs to be cured.”

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Last week, Texas Republicans added language to their platform stating that they would “recognize the legitimacy and value of counseling which offers reparative therapy and treatment to patients who are seeking escape from the homosexual lifestyle.”

Hughes told Cooper that the language was adopted in response to concerns from a delegate’s neighbor that the therapy “might be taken away,” saying it had worked for him. Hughes did not identify the delegate who took the story to party leaders.

“The language is in the platform because we want to make sure that people have rights,” Hughes explained. “We heard from people who wanted access to that kind of counseling, that kind of therapy, and so we believe in free speech, in free choice.”

Cooper also pointed out to Hughes that Exodus International head Alan Chambers has disavowed and apologized for his organization’s work promoting this kind of “therapy,” and played a clip of Hughes saying that their work would “haunt” him until the day he died because of the damage it did making people feel God did not love them as they were.

“Does it concern you, again, that your party is now backing a form of therapy which basically every major medical organization says doesn’t work, can be harmful, and which many of the people who have been through it say it doesn’t work and is bad for kids?” Cooper asked.

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Hughes reiterated that his party had “heard testimony” and “read reports” regarding the therapy’s benefits, but did take issue with Chambers’ point regarding religion.

“No one is saying that God doesn’t love people as they are,” he told Cooper. “There’s nothiing in the platform about that. No one is trying to take that position. Every one of us makes mistakes, makes decisions we’re not proud of. God loves each one of us, and he offers us a way for us to deal with sin and bad choices. But I do strongly disagree with what he said about God not loving people.”

“The fact that you view being gay — or you characterize it — as a ‘mistake,’ or something that should be changed really kind of maybe says more about your position than what your words actually say,” Cooper said in response.

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Watch Cooper’s interview with Hughes, as aired on Wednesday on CNN, below.

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2020 Election

Trump’s ex-election security official attacks Giuliani for ‘apparent attempt to undermine confidence in the election’

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President Donald Trump and his legal crew of misfit attorneys have waged 39 lawsuits to overturn the 2020 election. All but one of them has been laughed out of court. Trump and his attorney, Rudy Giuliani, have continued going to court in an attempt to get a legal challenge to the U.S. Supreme Court. Trump also fired his cybersecurity czar responsible for securing the election after refusing to corroborate the story that the election was stolen.

In an interview with "60 Minutes," Chris Krebs, former director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, explained that Giuliani and Trump are apparently attempting "to undermine confidence in the election, to confuse people, to scare people.”

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‘Failed incumbent’ Trump is being ignored now that his ‘mystique is gone’: Ex-GOPer Dave Jolly

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Former Republican Rep. David Jolly explained that there are two problems outgoing President Donald Trump is facing: First, he is resting comfortably in his own house of denial, but second, his advisers aren't doing their jobs in walking him through his lack of options to steal the 2020 election.

"None of those advisers will actually go to work for Donald Trump," said Jolly. "Consider just among the legal community the number of reputable lawmakers that said we won't have a meritless claim because their reputation is on the line as well."

He recalled all of the times Trump bragged that he would hire "all the best people" for the White House and cabinet.

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2020 Election

‘Pathetic’ Trump ridiculed by MSNBC guest for latest attention-grabbing stunts: ‘He’s the Republicans’ problem’ now

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Appearing on MSNBC's "AM Joy" with host Maria Teresa Kumar, conservative Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin ridiculed Donald Trump for whining about his election loss and making plans to disrupt President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration in January, saying the president can't stand not being the center of attention.

Asked about the president wanting to possibly hold a rally on Biden's swearing-in day, Rubin labeled the president as "pathetic."

"I think it's somewhat ridiculous and it's also a good test for the media, frankly," Rubin responded. "There is absolutely no bigger story than the inauguration of Joe Biden and no one should cover Trump's [ inaudible]. This is pathetic -- jumping up and down, 'me, me, me.'"

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