A video has surfaced online, which appears to show members of the Alaskan House Caucus laughing when asked by a member of the press about its plans to legalise civil unions, before saying the issue “never came up” during discussions.

The video, posted by Alaska Commons, features Mark Miller, a journalist from the Juneau Empire asked the Republican-led House Majority Caucus whether it had plans to introduce civil unions, of some form, for same-sex couples.

He cited a study which found that less than 30% of respondents were opposed to any kind of legal recognition for gay couples in the state.

After laughter erupts from the House, Republican Leader Lance Pruitt, says: “As you’ll notice, most of the discussion that we had in here was related to… they all inter-tie. Whether it’s economics, and its impact on healthy communities, whether it’s road to resources…

“I think that’s what is important about this Caucus is that we focussed on the things that really allow people to have a great life.

“We didn’t have a discussion here about what happens inside your home. We had a discussion here about whether or not you can make money, whether there’s a great economy and whether or not you’re going to have the opportunity to live in Alaska with a great future.

He concludes: “We didn’t talk about that, I will be straight, we did not talk about that particular issue. That was not something that we said ‘we are going to make that one of our guiding principles’, that’s not something that came up in our discussion.”