US: Scott Walker insists Boy Scouts’ gay ban has ‘protected children’

The 2016 presidential hopeful, who launched campaign this week, has voiced his support of the recent ban on gay troop leaders in the Boy Scouts of America.

Speaking of his support of the ban he said: “I was an Eagle Scout, my kids have been involved, Tonette (his wife) was a den mother.

“I have had a lifelong commitment to the Scouts and support the previous membership policy because it protected children and advanced Scout values.”

The executive committee of the Boy Scouts of America has backed a resolution that would end the organisaton’s blanket ban on gay leaders. It would mean that individual Scout units could set their own policy.

In a statement, the organisation said: “This change allows Scouting’s members and parents to select local units, chartered to organizations with similar beliefs, that best meet the needs of their families.”

It added: “This change would also respect the right of religious chartered organizations to continue to choose adult leaders whose beliefs are consistent with their own.”

Following a long discussion last year, the BSA changed its policy to allow openly gay youth members, but maintained a ban on “open or avowed” gay adult staff or volunteers.

It was recently revealed that Walker is at odds with his own sons over his continued opposition to same-sex marriage.

His wife Tonette Walker revealed that her husband’s hardline anti-gay marriage stance is causing internal conflict within their family.

She told the Washington Post: “That was a hard one. Our sons were disappointed… I was torn. I have children who are very passionate, and Scott was on his side very passionate.

“It’s hard for me because I have a cousin who I love dearly – she is like a sister to me – who is married to a woman, her partner of 18 years.”

In his official statement on the recent SCOTUS ruling, Walker claimed equality was a “grave mistake”.

“As a result of this decision, the only alternative left for the American people is to support an amendment to the U.S. Constitution to reaffirm the ability of the states to continue to define marriage.”

However, despite being strongly opposed to the right of same-sex couples to marry, Walker has actually already attended a same-sex wedding.

He insisted previously: “Even though my position on marriage is still that its defined as between a man and a woman, and I support the constitution of the state but for someone I love, we’ve been to a reception.”

Describing the issue as “personal”, he said the wedding was of a family member.