Newt Gingrich. Image: Gage Skidmore/Flickr/CC BY

Newt Gingrich, the current front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination, signed a pledge while on the campaign trail in Iowa Thursday. The pledge is to push for a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriages. The candidate also said that he believes homosexuality is a choice.

National Organization for Marriage

The pledge was drawn up by the National Organization for Marriage, an organization that has previously criticized Gingrich for his four marriages. Yet on Thursday the organization was proud to announce that Gingrich had signed its pledge.

Paul last hold-out

The pledge has also been signed by Mitt Romney, Michele Bachmann, Rick Perry and Rick Santorum. The sole hold-out of the currently running Republican candidates is Ron Paul.

If elected to the presidency, the pledge vows, Gingrich will be honor-bound to appoint only judges who “will respect the original meaning” of the word marriage. That, in the eyes of the NOM, means between two people of the opposite sex.

It’s a choice, says Gingrich

In an interview with the Des Moines Register, Gingrich said homosexuality is a choice, the way some people choose celibacy.

“I think people have a significant range of choice within a genetic pattern. I don’t believe in genetic determinism, and I don’t think there is any great evidence of genetic determinism. There are propensities. Are you more likely to do this or more likely to do that? But that doesn’t mean it’s definitional.”

Gingrich has recently come under fire from his lesbian sister, Candace Gingrich-Jones, over his stand on gay marriage. She said, as far as this one issue goes, “he is definitely on the wrong side of history.” She said for the record that she will be voting Obama in 2012.

Would re-instate DADT

Gingrich made it clear later in the interview that, if elected, he would reinstate the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy for the military. He said:

“I don’t think that in the military you would particularly want sexual behavior to be an overt issue.”


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