In a blatant display of hypocrisy, one Texas Republican lawmaker mocked an openly LGBTQ colleague by suggesting that she is sexually attracted to cookware.
Rep. Pat Fallon, R-Prosper, a tea-partier who’s currently running for state Senate, made the comments Monday while speaking to the Wichita County Republican Women, according to the El Paso Times. (Listen to the audio above.)
Fallon was apparently attempting to argue that Democrats are trying to divide America based on things like class, race, ethnicity and gender. At one point, Fallon called Democrats alleged efforts to divide the country based on race “inherently evil.” Then, he proceeded to attack LGBTQ people.
“You can’t be gay anymore,” Fallon said. “It’s like the whole alphabet soup now — lesbian, transgender, bisexual, questioning. And there’s something called pansexual. There’s a member of the Legislature, a Democrat from the El Paso region, she’s pansexual. I don’t even know what that is. Suffice to say, secure your cookware.”
Fallon was referring to Rep. Mary Gonzalez, D-El Paso, who became the first openly pansexual elected official in the nation in 2012. Those who identify as pansexual can be attracted to people regardless of their sex or gender identity.
“I thought we were over it, but I guess we’re not,” Gonzalez told the El Paso Times in response to Fallon’s comments. “My sexuality was an issue when I first got elected, but we have collectively tried to ensure we’re not discriminatory and, sadly, Rep. Fallon’s comments take us back a bit.”
In 2015, Equality Texas named Fallon the 10th-worst House member on LGBTQ rights. That same year, Fallon co-authored legislation to undo LGBTQ nondiscrimination protection in Texas cities. He is also a strong supporter of anti-transgender bathroom bills.
Fallon will square off against Democrat Kevin Lopez in Senate District 30 in the Nov. 6 election.
Here’s how some of Gonzalez’s fellow Democrats in the House responded:
We could all talk about the Pat Fallon we know,…but when they go low, we go high.
— Terry Canales (@TerryCanales40) October 17, 2018
This is politics. We expect our colleagues to vociferously advocate for policy positions, inclusive of criticisms of their opponents’ positions. But it crosses the line when the personal life of a member is ridiculed for cheap laughs. #txlege https://t.co/huntApvyyw
— Donna Howard (@DonnaHowardTX) October 16, 2018
"His patronizing mockery of a fierce LGBTQ Latina advocate like @RepMaryGonzalez — someone I know he's treated as a friend in person — is really beyond the pale and part of the disgraceful turn politics has taken in recent years." #txlege https://t.co/dU1zX3VmZ2
— Joe Moody (@moodyforelpaso) October 16, 2018
That’s pretty damn low. She’s never been anything but nice to this dude. He better apologize publicly, and I mean now. https://t.co/rCFiDW67uB
— Rep. Poncho Nevárez (@poncho_nevarez) October 16, 2018
— Celia Israel (@CeliaIsrael) October 16, 2018
Pat Fallon’s cheap shot against @MALCTx Vice Chair @RepMaryGonzalez merits a donation to @Lopez4Texas – a #firefighter & city councilman who believes diversity makes Texas great. I’m sending a contribution today. @StoneDemDal @HRCDFW @TexasHDC @texasdemocrats @DCYD @texasyds https://t.co/A0eGmDbCUi
— Rafael Anchía (@RafaelAnchia) October 17, 2018