GOP Lawmaker Asks Lesbian Colleague If She Is A Pedophile During Equity And Inclusion Hearing

Rhode Island Capitol TV

Republicans falsely pushing the ‘groomer’ narrative? Groundbreaking.

During a Rhode Island State Senate hearing for an equity and inclusion bill, GOP Rep. Robert Quattrocchi asked his lesbian colleague if she was a “pedophile.”

Democratic Rep. Rebecca Kislak, an open lesbian, is the sponsor of bill HB 5763, which would require all legislation to include an “equity impact” statement on how it might affect “historically disadvantaged” populations, specifically “race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex sexual orientation, gender expression, disability, age or country of ancestral origin.”

Rep. Quattrocchi raised his concern that the bill was “too broad.” “It just seems like a lot,” Quattrocchi asked Kislak during the hearing. “You don’t feel that all the anti-discrimination laws that we have already, which are many, protecting all these classes that you’re, that are listed in this bill?”

He asked if the bill would require them to consider the “Satanists of Rhode Island.” He then continued, asking if pedophiles would also need to be taken into account under this law.

“First, I want to point out that pedophile is not a sexual orientation,” Kislak responded, adding that it was “really offensive.”

“Oh, I didn’t mean to,” Quattrocchi said. “Are you a pedophile? I’m sorry.”

A commotion broke out in the House, which was quickly redirected by Rep. Evan Shanley stating the lawmakers were “getting off track.” Kislak pointed to this interaction as to why equity needs to be discussed in the House.

Several LGBTQ advocacy groups signed a public letter condemning the comment. “Our representatives should be working to ensure safety, dignity, and equity for all residents, not perpetuating dangerous, false comparisons that undermine the humanity of LGBTQ+ people,” the letter said.

According to the Providence Journal, Janson Wu, the executive director of GLAD, a legal advocacy group for LGBTQ people, said the “offensive” comment comes at a time when the term “groomers” is increasingly being used as an attack against members of the LGBTQ communities.

Quattrocchi has not issued an apology, stating the interaction was a “misunderstanding.”

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