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Pair of Tony Perkins-associated politicians accused of serious sexual misconduct

Tony Perkins, the president of the anti-LGBT hate group Family Research Council, has made a career out of demonizing the LGBT community including repeatedly linking homosexuality and pedophilia, despite overwhelming scientific evidence to the contrary.

Now, in the span of three weeks, two prominent Republican candidates either endorsed by or affiliated with Perkins and the FRC—Roy Moore, a twice-removed Alabama Supreme Court Judge, and Wesley Goodman, a conservative Ohio state legislator who made a name championing pro-family and anti-LGBT causes—have been hit with serious allegations of predatory sexual behavior aimed at young men and girls.

Moore, the Republican nominee for the U.S. Senate seat in Alabama, is facing accusations that he sexually harassed high school-aged girls and, in one case, sexually assaulted a 14-year-old, all while he was in his 30s.

Perkins initially endorsed Moore, saying he would provide “bold leadership.” After multiple allegations became public Perkins tweeted out something of a change of heart.

In the Nov. 10 statement, Perkins called the allegations against Moore “beyond disturbing” and added that “if true, would disqualify him” or any other candidate from a position of public trust. Despite Perkins’ tweet, FRC Action, the 501c4 connected to the FRC that supports candidates for office, still prominently displays its endorsement of Moore’s campaign on its homepage.

Goodman, a rising star in the Ohio Republican Party who was strongly anti-LGBT, resigned his position Nov. 16, just days after what state officials called “inappropriate behavior” with a man in his state office in Columbus, Ohio.

Before running for office, Goodman worked for Perkins in the FRC president’s capacity as head of the Council for National Policy, a secretive and highly influential right-wing group that as late as 2014 counted as members Stephen Bannon and hate group leaders including Mat Staver, Tim Wildmon, and Frank Gaffney among others.

Perkins didn’t endorse Goodman’s political run, but reports published The Washington Post that Perkins was aware of Goodman, 33, allegedly fondling a supporter’s son at a conference in Washington.

The Post reported that Perkins told the boy’s father the matter would be “dealt … with prudence” and that Perkins referred to “similar incidents” in a letter to the young man’s father.

Perkins called on Goodman to withdraw from his legislative race at the time, to no avail. Perkins has since refused to comment on Goodman’s behavior.

This is not the first time FRC has been embroiled in a sexual misconduct scandal. In 2015, FRC Action’s executive director, the reality television star Josh Duggar, resigned following revelations that he had molested young girls as a teenager.   

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