Republican candidate Mark Harris suggested things were better when ‘homosexuality was criminalized’

A Republican candidate has suggested the US was better off when the US has laws banning gay sex.

Mark Harris is the GOP congressional nominee for North Carolina’s 9th District, after defeating Republican incumbent Rep. Robert Pittenger in a primary.

Media Matters has exposed shocking comments that the evangelical pro-Trump pastor and political candidate made about gay sex.

Mark Harris

A recording reveals that speaking in 2015, Harris lamented the “moral decay” that has gone from the criminalization of homosexuality to the alleged “criminalization of Christianity.”

In the clip from a ‘Rally for Liberty,’ he said: “We are a nation that is so out of balance in our economy, in our foreign policy, in our treatment of the Constitution.

“But I want to leave you this afternoon as I wrap up with truly the most detrimental imbalance which many will argue is the root to all the others and that is, ladies and gentlemen, I’ve come here today to declare to you that we are a nation which is spiritually out of balance in every way.

“In one generation you and I have witnessed this country sliding from a nation who once shared a moral vision based on Judeo-Christian ethic to a nation floundering in moral decay.

“In one generation we have watched our nation who once believed in lifelong marriages to the same spouse to a divorce rate now well over 50 percent.

“We have watched in one generation where homosexuality was once criminalized to now we see the criminalization of Christianity. And I could go on and on with the entertainment, with the education, with the life issue.”

Homosexuality was fully decriminalised in the United States when the Supreme Court ruled that state-level sodomy laws are unconstitutional, in 2003 court case Lawrence v. Texas.

The candidate has previously claimed that being gay is a “choice”.

Mark Harris

Speaking in 2013, he claimed: “I’ve yet to buy in, as there is not the medical evidence, that an individual that chooses the homosexual lifestyle is born that way… that is a choice.

“It’s kind of like if you get down to the issue of the evidence of global warming, you’ve got scientists on both sides; you have the medical community on both sides.”

Challenged on the comments by Roll Call this week, he stood by the claim, saying: “I have not done an in-depth study. But I still continue, and feel like, and believe that there’s data on both sides.”

Harris is endorsed by the political arm of the Family Research Council, an anti-LGBT evangelical lobbying group.

FRC Action lavished praise on Harris, hailing him as “a strong defender of faith, family, and freedom.”

The group said:”He understands the great danger in forcing peace-loving Americans to violate their deeply-held religious beliefs and will work to protect the rights of conscience.

“FRC Action PAC is confident that Rev. Harris will be a strong advocate for constitutional limited government, for individual liberties, and for strong family values. Once again, we are pleased to offer our endorsement of his candidacy.”