The contest to become Governor of Colorado has been rocked by comments from a Republican candidate comparing gay marriage to bestiality.

Bob Beaurprez caused outrage by picking maverick right-winger Janet Rowland as his running mate in the closely-fought gubernatorial contest.

Rowland was a controversial choice, especially since a radio interview in March, when she asked:

“For some people, the alternative lifestyle is bestiality. Do we allow a man to marry a sheep?

“Some people have group sex. Should we allow two men and three women to marry? Should we allow polygamy, with one man and five wives?” she said, according to The Aurora Sentinel.

“And I know some of you are outraged that I would compare bestiality to this.

“Forty or 50 years ago, people would be outraged that we were talking about gay marriage.”

The remarks have proved to be a gift for Colorado Democrats, seeking to portray their opponents as ultra-right wing and out of touch.

Rowland has apologised for the comment, but her stance will strike a chord with the sizable Christian population in the state.

The 42-year old, who is married with two children, later went on to say she is not homophobic. She worked as a social worker for ten years, and claims to have gay friends.

The big issue for Colorado residents in this election is not gay ‘marriage’, but water shortages.