This Hate Group Leader Has Hosted Most Of The Republican Presidential Candidates

Tony Perkins, a right-wing radio talk show host and president of the anti-gay hate group Family Research Council (FRC), has hosted most of the Republican presidential candidates on his radio show or at FRC-sponsored events.

Tony Perkins Is President Of The Anti-LGBT Hate Group Family Research Council

Tony Perkins Is President Of Family Research Council. Tony Perkins has been the president of the Family Research Council since 2003. FRC says its “mission is to advance faith, family and freedom in public policy and the culture from a Christian worldview.” [Family Research Council, accessed 11/19/15; Family Research Council, accessed 11/19/15]

FRC Has Been Designated A Hate Group By The Southern Poverty Law Center. In 2010, the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) designated FRC as an anti-gay “hate group” due to its propagation of known falsehoods about LGBT people:

The Family Research Council (FRC) bills itself as “the leading voice for the family in our nation's halls of power,” but its real specialty is defaming gays and lesbians. The FRC often makes false claims about the LGBT community based on discredited research and junk science. The intention is to denigrate LGBT people in its battles against same-sex marriage, hate crimes laws, anti-bullying programs and the repeal of the military's “Don't Ask, Don't Tell” policy.


The FRC also strongly promotes the “ex-gay” movement as a way to combat LGBT civil rights measures, though professional organizations have repeatedly called so-called “reparative therapy” (which seeks to turn gays and lesbians into heterosexuals) into question and issued statements that don't support it.


Part of the FRC's recent strategy is to pound home the false claim that gays and lesbians are more likely to sexually abuse children. This is false. The American Psychological Association, among others, has concluded that “homosexual men are not more likely to sexually abuse children than heterosexual men are.” That doesn't matter to the FRC, though. [Southern Poverty Law Center, 11/23/15]

Perkin Has A History Of Making Inflammatory Anti-LGBT Statements. Perkins has called pedophilia “a homosexual problem,” accused gay people of recruiting children, and compared gay advocates to terrorists. [GLAAD, accessed 11/18/15]

Most Republican Candidates Have Appeared On Perkins' Radio Show Or At FRC Events

Perkins Hosted Seven Republican Candidates On His Radio Show. Tony Perkins has hosted seven current and former Republican presidential candidates on his daily national radio show Washington Watch with Tony Perkins since the start of the 2016 election cycle. Perkins has hosted a total of 31 interviews with GOP presidential candidates, including Rick Santorum, Mike Huckabee, Bobby Jindal, Lindsey Graham, Ted Cruz, Rick Perry, and Scott Walker:

Seven Republican Candidates Headlined FRC's Value Voters Summit In September. In September, Republican presidential candidates Donald Trump, Ben Carson, Marco Rubio, Huckabee, Graham, Santorum and Jindal attended FRC's Values Voter Summit, a conservative political conference co-sponsored by FRC. [2015 Values Voters Summit, accessed 11/24/15]

Ten Republican Candidates Joined Perkins At Iowa Conservative Conference. In July, Perkins joined Republican presidential candidates Trump, Carson, Rubio, Walker, Cruz, Huckabee, Graham, Santorum, Jindal, and Perry to speak at the Iowa Family Leadership Summit. FRC also co-sponsored the summit. [The Family Leadership Summit, accessed 11/18/15; Media Matters, 7/15/15]


Media Matters searched Family Research Council's website for radio appearances of 17 current and former declared Republican presidential candidates: Jeb Bush, Ben Carson, Chris Christie, Ted Cruz, Carly Fiorina, Jim Gilmore, Lindsey Graham, Mike Huckabee, Bobby Jindal, John Kasich, George Pataki, Rand Paul, Rick Perry, Marco Rubio, Rick Santorum, Donald Trump and Scott Walker. Appearances outside the span of each candidate's declared campaign were excluded.