U.S. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher‘s tough re-election bid may have just gotten tougher. The 15-term California Republican who represents uber-conservative wealthy Orange County voters this week told a delegation of Realtors he supports anti-gay housing discrimination.
“A person who owns their own home, they have a right to choose who they do business with,” Rohrabacher told members of the Orange County Association of Realtors (OCAR).
“We’ve drawn a line on racism. But I don’t think we should extend that line” to include LGBT people, he added, according to The Orange County Register.
Rohrabacher is so friendly with Russian President Vladimir Putin he’s earned the nickname “Putin’s favorite Congressman.” The FBI in 2012 had to warn Rohrabacher the Kremlin considers him a valuable information asset – complete with a Russian code name. He also does not believe Russia interfered in the U.S. 2016 election.
“Every homeowner should be able to make a decision not to sell their home to someone [if] they don’t agree with their lifestyle,” Congressman Rohrabacher also said, according to former Orange County Association of Realtors (OCAR) President Wayne Woodyard.
Rohrabacher acknowledged that his pro-discrimination position would likely “alienate a certain number of gays who think I’m anti-gay, which isn’t the case.”
He says he strongly opposes discrimination based on race, gender, or religion, but stressed he has taken this stance because “there are some fundamentalist Christians who do not approve of their lifestyle,” meaning, being LGBTQ. “I support their rights.”
His “line” on discrimination also does not extend to political views. He believes a Republican should be able to refuse to sell his home to a Democrat, and vice-versa.
Some of Rohrabacher’s other far right wing extremist positions include opposing the Violence Against Women Act, and opposing the banning of anti-gay discrimination in the workplace. He repeatedly has voted to make same-sex marriage illegal, and even supports a constitutional amendment banning marriage equality. He is also a climate change denialist.
The 1.3 million member National Association of Realtors this week, in response to his anti-gay positions, dropped their endorsement of Rohrabacher. The organization also withdrew his name from their “President’s Circle,” a group of lawmakers NAR strongly urges members to support.
Rohrabacher will face several challengers in the June 5 primary.