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Republican Scott Parkinson falsely claims pedophiles are part of LGBTQ community

For years, Parkinson has been a part of the D.C. Republican establishment.

By Jesse Valentine - February 06, 2024
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Scott Parkinson
Scott Parkinson is running in the Republican primary for Virginia Senate to unseat Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine. (Photo: Parkinson for Senate)

As first flagged by the progressive news site Blue Virginia, Scott Parkinson, a Republican running for U.S. Senate in Virginia, is spreading a hateful myth about LGBTQ people.

On Jan. 31, Parkinson appeared on the Stand podcast with Kelly and Niki Tshibaka. During a discussion about parental rights and religious freedom, Parkinson claimed the plus symbol in LGBTQ+ represented pedophiles.

“Do you know what the plus stands for? I mean, it basically stands for what they now are terming MAPS: Minor Attracted People. Pedophiles.” Parkinson said. “And I don’t think that that’s actually what the gay and lesbian community stands for. I think that there’s a lot of responsible adults that don’t want government in the bedroom, but also agree that children shouldn’t be groomed. And so, I think that’s a big part of the parents’ rights movement in taking back our classrooms and ensuring that they are sticking to math, science, reading, and not you know indoctrinating kids on diversity, equity, inclusion, CRT and all this other nonsense.”

For decades, far-right groups have tried to demonize LGBTQ people by falsely tying them to pedophiles and child abuse. A study by Media Matters found these lies have gained traction in recent years due to online communities like 4chan.

Parkinson entered the Republican primary for U.S. Senate in Virginia in April 2023. He is hoping to challenge incumbent Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine in the general election. Kaine has been a fierce advocate for LGBTQ rights.

Prior to running for office, Parkinson worked for Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI), then-Florida Rep. Ron DeSantis, and the right-wing Club for Growth. On his campaign website’s “Meet Scott” page, Parkinson’s campaign describes him as an outsider fighting against the establishment.

A spokesperson for Parkinson did not immediately respond to a request to comment for this story.


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