Mark Harris is currently running as the Republican nominee for the House of Representatives in North Carolina‘s 9th District. He has worked as a media pastor, sharing sermons via podcast and appearing on the Christian Broadcasting Network. He has also been involved with the anti-LGBTQ hate group the Family Research Council (FRC). So, given all those things, it shouldn’t be terribly surprising that a video has surfaced in which Harris openly longs for the days when homosexuality was criminalized — after all, FRC President Tony Perkins recently said something similar.
At the 2015 Rally for Liberty in Jomeokee, North Carolina, Mark Harris told the crowd:
“In one generation, you and I have witnessed this country sliding from a nation who once shared a moral vision based on Judeo-Christian ethics 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%. We have watched in one generation where homosexuality was once criminalized, to now, we see the criminalization of Christianity.”
It may come as news to you that Christianity has been criminalized. But good news — it hasn’t. (Obviously.) But, then, Mark Harris is wrong about a lot of stuff.
Two years prior, he said, “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.”
And Harris has put his money where his mouth is, as it were. In addition to working closely with the FRC, he was a major force in the fight to ban marriage equality in the North Carolina state constitution. He has also fought for the Public Facilities Privacy and Security Act, better known as House Bill 2, which not only was a transphobic “Bathroom Bill,” but also struck down existing and future LGBT nondiscrimination statutes.
The slate of Republican candidates this year is particularly embarrassing. In addition to Mark Harris, other bigoted candidates include Arthur Jones, a literal Neo-Nazi running for Congress in Illinois, and Steve West, a Missouri candidate running for the state House, who once said “Hitler was right.” Mark Harris isn’t even the only awful North Carolina GOP candidate. There’s also Russell Walker, a proud racist who got famous for trying to force courts in his state to hang Confederate flags — he’s running for the state legislature.