GOP women's group hosts speaker with history of comparing gay rights to Nazi Germany and cigarettes
Pacific Justice Institute President Brad Dacus (Wikimedia Commons)

A Republican women's group in California has defended a controversial guest speaker with a history of comparing LGBT rights to Nazi Germany and cigarettes.


According to the New Times of San Luis Obispo County, Pacific Justice Institute President Brad Dacus is scheduled to speak on “civil actions taking place in California” during a Thursday Estero Bay Republican Women Federated luncheon.

The Southern Poverty Law Center lists Pacific Justice Institute as an "active ant-LGBT group." And GLAAD has compiled controversial quotes from Dacus campaign against marriage equality in California.

"There was another time in history when people, when the bell tolled. And the question was whether or not they were going to hear it," Dacus said while supporting Prop 8 in 2008. "The time was during Nazi Germany with Adolf Hitler... Let us not make that mistake folks. Let us hear the bell! Vote on Proposition 8!"

In 2012, Dacus argued that homosexuality was more dangerous than cigarette smoking.

"Of course parents want what’s best for their children, parents love their children, and parents know that the homosexual lifestyle gives for boys an average lifespan of the age of 40," he insisted without pointing to any scientific evidence. "It’s worse than being a chain cigarette smoker. Parents who love their children are going to want to do everything they can, especially in the developmental, preadolescence, to steer them in the right direction."

Douglas Heumann, former president of the Gay and Lesbian Alliance of the Central Coast, told the New Times that it was "important to know this type of person is coming into our community and spreading lies and hate.”

And Los Osos resident Ellen Sturtz said that she brought Dacus to the attention to the County Board of Supervisors when she learned that he would be speaking at Morro Bay Golf Course, a facility run by the county.

But Estero Bay Republican Women Federated President Sandi Tannler said that she didn't know what all the fuss was about.

“People who haven’t heard him say he is a hate monger, but after they listened to him they walk away saying, ‘Hey he’s a good guy,’” she insisted. “If they don’t agree with him, they don’t have to listen to him.”