A Republican Senator who opposes gay rights has joked about doing ‘indecent things’ with animals as a child.

Thad Cochran – who represents Mississippi in the United States Senate – voted against against sexual orientation to the definition of hate crimes, against protection from discrimination in employment, in favour of a constutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, and for the Defence of Marriage Act.

However, in a speech at a hospital this week, he was more than happy to joke about bestiality.

He said of his childhood: “It was an adventure to be out there in the country and see what goes on.

“Picking up pecans to all kind of indecent things with animals… I know some of you know what that is.”

According to WLBT, the 76-year-old denied making the joke, despite clear video evidence circulating online.

He said: “Maybe I was misunderstood… I don’t remember saying it.”

Ironically, Mississippi’s state sodomy law – the same legislation that criminalised homosexuality – also classes bestiality as a crime.

It reads: “Every person who shall be convicted of the detestable and abominable crime against nature committed with mankind or with a beast, shall be punished by imprisonment in the penitentiary for a term of not more than ten years.”

In April, the Governor of the US state of Mississippi signed into law a bill which could allow anti-gay discrimination by religious business owners.

Pro-equality businesses are protesting the change by displaying window stickers assuring customers they would never use it to refuse them service.

However, conservative groups have claimed that the stickers are ‘bullying’ Christian business owners by pledging to not discriminate against anyone.

Watch the clip below: