The Republican candidate for President of the United States has given a written response to questions for a leading American gay publication.

However, John McCain refused to engage with many of the issues put to him.

Asked by the Washington Blade: “what is your advice to gay rights activists as to what they should pursue and realistically expect to pass in 2009 with regard to the issues listed above?” he replied:

“My advice to all Americans is that it is time we came together to work in a bipartisan fashion to find real solutions to the challenges facing our country.

“I will be the President for all Americans — and will challenge every American to work with me to put our country first.”

He reiterated his view that “a child is best raised by a mother and father because of the unique contributions that they make together to the development of a child.”

Senator McCain also said he supports attempts to ban gay marriage in California and opposes laws against LGBT hate crimes.

On the ban on gays in the military, he told the Blade:

“I’m going to defer to our military commanders. So far they have told me it’s working. I’m willing to have the policy reviewed to make sure that’s the case.”

Senator McCain claimed that former Congressman Jim Kolbe is a personal friend who is gay.

“We first ran for Congress in Arizona the same year — in 1982,” he said.

“We served together starting in 1985. He’s a great American who spent two decades serving his country in Congress. Like me, he also served in Vietnam so we have a special kinship.

“When he came out in 1996, there was no question that I would stand by him. He’s a friend and a patriot and has been an admirable public servant, and a good example of why someone’s sexuality should not be relevant in public life.”

The Republican candidate said while he supports “the concept” of non-discrimination in employment he is unsure about a federal law protecting LGBT people in the workplace.

“We need to make sure legislation doesn’t lead to a flood of frivolous lawsuits or infringe on religious institutions,” he said.

“What I can say now is I will give careful consideration to any legislation that reaches my desk, and confer with Congress before making decisions.”

Read the full McCain Q and A here.