Florida politician who fought tooth-and-nail against gay equality now claims to be LGBT ‘champion’

PinkNews logo surrounded by illustrated images including a rainbow, unicorn, PN sign and pride flag.

Florida’s Attorney General, who wasted a vast amount of taxpayer money trying to block same-sex weddings, has claimed she is actually an LGBT ally after the Orlando massacre.

Republican Attorney General Pam Bondi was a fierce opponent of same-sex marriage until the very end last year, claiming in a legal brief that “disrupting Florida’s existing marriage laws would impose significant public harm”, and would cause “significant financial and logistical problems”.

The AG fought bitterly against same-sex marriage until the very week that marriages began, filing desperate taxpayer-funded attempts in successive court battles to stall on the issue on behalf of the state.

The thrice-married Ms Bondi – who was named ‘Loser of the Year’ for her sad attempts to stall equality – didn’t even give up once equality became law, filing a dispute to avoid shelling out the hundreds of thousands of dollars that the case had racked up in legal fees.

However, following the Orlando massacre, which saw 49 people killed and 53 injured in a shooting at the Pulse gay bar in Orlando, the Florida politician appears to be trying to re-write history.

In an interview with CNN anchor Anderson Cooper, she got called out for trying to claim that her past actions were somehow pro-gay.

He asked her: “A lot of gay people in Florida said they thought you were being a hypocrite, you for years have basically gone after gay people, and said in court that we’re trying to do harm to the people of Florida… do you really think you’re a champion of the gay community?”

She said: “Let me tell you. When I was sworn in as attorney general, I put my hand on the Bible and was sworn to uphold the constitution of the state of Florida. That’s not a law.

“That [ban on same-sex marriage] was voted in to our state constitution by the voters of Florida. That’s what I was defending. I’ve never said I don’t like gay people, that’s ridiculous.”

When Cooper cited her very specific arguments recorded in legal briefs which claim gay people cause “public harm”, she insisted it was simply a “legal argument” – even though most other Attorney Generals managed to refrain from such inflammatory rhetoric.

The CNN anchor pushed: “And after the federal judge ruled, you spent hundreds of thousands of dollars of taxpayer money fighting it.”

Incredibly, she claimed that her actions trying to block gay marriages actually helped gay people to get married, claiming: “”Well Anderson, we rushed to get it to the Supreme Court.

“You know what today is about? Human beings. Today’s about victims.”

Talking about the victims, Cooper responded: “You’ve been talking about a hotline thatallows family members and spouses of the dead to get information, which is incredibly important.

“Had there been no same-sex marriage, you do realise that spouses, there would be no spouses, that boyfriends and girlfriends of the dead would not be able to get information and would not be able probably even to visit in the hospital here. Isn’t there a sick irony in that?”

She insisted: “I was defending the constitution of what over 69 percent of the voters put in the constitution.”