Former Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank on Sunday called potential Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson “abysmally ignorant” for his views on homosexuality.
Appearing on CNN’s “State of the Union” to promote his new memoir, Mr. Frank, who is openly gay, lambasted the retired neurosurgeon for recently citing prison sex as evidence that being gay is a choice.
“First, I’ve never heard prison rape described as a kind of example of choice,” said Mr. Frank, Mediaite first reported. “It is striking about how human intelligence can vary. He is apparently a first-rate surgeon but when it comes to something this basic about human nature, he’s abysmally ignorant.”
“Secondly, [Mr. Carson] wants to use that ignorance in the defense of prejudice,” Mr. Frank continued. “And most discouraging of all, being ignorant and bigoted against gay and lesbian people doesn’t seem to hurt him with the Republican primary electorate.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Mr. Frank claimed that there are closeted gay members in Congress.
“The issue where they lose me is hypocrisy,” Mr. Frank said. “What I think is unacceptable is to vote a certain set of rules as an elected official and then to violate them yourself. But if you are a Democrat, Republican, whatever, and you vote to allow people to do what you do, then I have no demand that you become public.”