Rep. Steve King (R-IA) told an Iowa newspaper that when he dies and goes to heaven, he doesn’t expect to meet any gay people there, and therefore same-sex marriage should be made illegal again in his state.
In an interview with the Jefferson Herald, King said that America is suffering from its desire to normalize “sin.”
“I would say that what was a sin 2,000 years ago is a sin today, and we need to stick to that principle,” said the conservative congressman.
In recent weeks, the Supreme Court decided not to hear a challenge to same-sex marriage in Iowa and Pope Francis and a coalition of high ranking Catholic officials issued a document indicating that the church is softening its hardline stance against LGBT people.
King, a Tea Party favorite and conservative Catholic, said that it will take some time for him to come to grips with this new ideological terrain.
“I owe it to Pope Francis to read it carefully and read it with precision before I pass judgment on it,” King said. “I would just say that in fact to pass judgment on his document seems a bit presumptuous as I hear myself say that.”
However, his gut feeling is that whatever the Vatican says, LGBT people will not be welcome in the kingdom of heaven.
“I’ll just say that what was a sin 2,000 years ago is a sin today,” King declared, “and people that were condemned to hell 2,000 years ago, I don’t expect to meet them should I make it to heaven. So let’s stick with that principle.”
When asked whether or not that group of “condemned” souls includes men and women who divorce or live together in sin before they marry, King demurred.
“Let me say it isn’t to me to pass that judgment,” he said, “and those who choose a lifestyle that I’ll say is not one that’s anointed and favored by my faith — or their faith, for that matter — that’s between them and God.”
In the past, King has called same-sex marriage “a purely socialist concept.” He has decried the “screaming, profane gays” demanding equal rights as a threat to “the foundations of individual rights and liberties” of all Americans.