George Bush ‘flattered’ by award from anti-LGBT hate group
George W Bush is apparently “flattered” to have been given an award by one of the world’s leading hate groups.
The former President was announced this month as the winner of the ‘Family and Democracy’ award presented by the World Congress of Families.
The US-based WCF is listed as an active anti-LGBT hate groups by extremism watchdog the Southern Poverty Law Center.
The WCF has been behind attempts to coordinate with hardline evangelical movements across the world, pushing anti-gay laws in developing countries. It previously worked closely with Russia’s anti-LGBT lobby to secure the country’s ‘gay propaganda’ law, and has backed a push to keep homosexuality criminalised in other countries.
But despite their status, an official spokesperson for the former Republican President suggested he was happy to be named by the group.
According to Right Wing Watch, the spokesperson said: “While flattered, our office is not aware of the award in question. I do know that the group kindly invited President Bush to deliver a keynote address, but his schedule did not permit him to participate.”
Bush’s term in office saw a renewal of anti-LGBT sentiment in the US, as he backed a mooted amendment to the US Constitution to ban equal marriage, opposed anti-discrimination protections, and resisted a push to allow gay soldiers to serve in the military.
He was the last hold-out in his family on same-sex marriage after his wife and daughter came out in favour in 2011.
The former President is comparatively moderate given some of the current Republican crop – and leaked conversations during his term in office showed he insisted on not “kicking gays” to appease evangelicals.
The former President’s brother Jeb! Bush made an ill-fated run for President himself earlier this year.