Ken Buck on Civil Rights



Won't compare gays to alcoholics again; better candidate now

Amy Stephens made the case that Ken Buck hurt the party in his failed 2010 Senate bid. Stephens said that the Weld County district attorney's performance in a national television interview had significant ramifications. Stephens noted that "unfortunately when Ken had the 'Meet the Press' incident, along with our gubernatorial (candidates), we watched a lot of things implode."

Buck said the campaign mistakes he made four years ago, including the controversial remark comparing gays to alcoholics, was a mistake he would not repeat again. "I was unprepared for the question, and I answered it in a shorthanded way, and I shouldn't have answered it," said Buck. "I'm a better candidate than I was four years ago. I will not implode, though I don't agree with the premise I did implode."

Source: Denver Post on 2014 Colorado Senate debate , Feb 26, 2014

Buck "mis-spoke" comparing homosexuality to alcoholism

Buck made national news after saying on Meet the Press that he believed same-sex attraction was a lifestyle choice and comparing homosexuality to alcoholism. He later stood by the statement even in the face of calls from gay activists, doctors and psychologists to retract them and even given the fact that the statements strongly supported assertions made by his detractors that his views are out of sync with the views of most Coloradans. [One voter wrote to Buck] calling for Buck to retract his comments. Buck's campaign sent this email:
Thank you for your response. Ken may have mis-spoke, but his desire is to serve the people of Colorado period. As the prosecuting attorney for Weld County, Ken was the only DA in the country to try a hate crime that involved a transgender individual and win. Too often comments are misunderstood and taken out of context, but the hope is that you will realize Ken's commitment to Colorado and its citizens.
Source: Colorado Independent coverage of 2010 Colorado Senate debate , Oct 25, 2010

Birth influences homosexuality like it influences alcoholism

Ken Buck compared homosexuality to alcoholism Sunday in a nationally televised debate. [One analyst speculated], "The homosexuality question is going to produce most of the headlines out of the debate."

Asked by the host to elaborate on a statement he made in an earlier debate about gays in the military, Buck said he believes sexual orientation is a choice. Buck went on to say, "I think that birth has an influence over it, like alcoholism and some other things, but I think that basically you have a choice."

Bennet jumped on Buck's remark. "I absolutely believe he's outside the mainstream of views on this," Bennet said.

After the debate, a Buck spokesman said Buck did not mean to imply with his alcoholism comparison that Buck believes homosexuality is a disease. Buck told The Denver Post after the debate that he "wasn't talking about being gay as a disease" but also said of his remark that "there's no doubt there will probably be a commercial on something like that" from Democrats.

Source: Greeley Tribune coverage of 2010 Colorado Senate debate , Oct 18, 2010

Being gay is a choice, but birth has an influence

Q: On the issue of gays, in a debate last month you expressed your support for "don't ask, don't tell," and you alluded to lifestyle choices. Do you believe that being gay is a choice?

BUCK: I do.

Q: Based on what?

BUCK: Based on what?

Q: Yeah, why do you believe that?

BUCK: Well, I guess, you can choose who your partner is.

Q: You don't think it's something that's determined at birth?

BUCK: I think that birth has an influence over like alcoholism and some other things, but I think that basically you, you have a choice.

Q: [to Bennet]: Does that put him outside the mainstream of views on this?

BENNET: I absolutely believe he's outside the mainstream of views on this.

Source: NBC's Meet the Press: 2010 Colorado Senate debate , Oct 17, 2010

Don't-ask-don't-tell policy makes a lot of sense

An issue that illustrates the differences between Buck and Bennet is the "don't ask, don't tell" policy. When asked about repealing don't-ask-don't-tell, Sen. Bennet said he supported lifting the ban, saying opposition to homosexuality was a result of "outdated views of our society."

Buck said, "I do not support the repeal of don't-ask-don't-tell. I think it is a policy that makes a lot of sense." The don't-ask-don't-tell policy itself was instituted during the Clinton years and prohibits inquiries into the sexual orientation of military members. The current policy states that a person who makes their sexuality known is subject to discharge under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

The Colorado Independent, in a story titled "Coloradans mostly agree with Bennet not Buck on don't-ask-don't-tell," reported that the majority of Coloradans supported lifting the ban. However, Buck's opinion appears to be more in line with the majority of generals and service-members.

Source: Greeley Gazette coverage of 2010 Colorado Senate debate , Sep 29, 2010

Prosecute the murder of transgender as a hate crime

Campaign For Liberty [created an] ad which is not a strict candidate endorsement, which would violate the law, but instead to promote the group's surveys.

The commenter suggests the ad was the work of wealthy Colorado gay-rights activist Tim Gill who, the theory goes, is supporting Buck because last year Buck chose to prosecute the murder of transgender Greeley resident Angie Zapata as a hate crime. The prosecution was a victory for the Zapata family and the gay community that rallied around the trial

Source: John Tomasic in The Colorado Independent , Jan 28, 2010

Supports Amendment to prevent same sex marriage.

Buck supports the CC survey question on banning same-sex marriage

The Christian Coalition voter guide [is] one of the most powerful tools Christians have ever had to impact our society during elections. This simple tool has helped educate tens of millions of citizens across this nation as to where candidates for public office stand on key faith and family issues.

The CC survey summarizes candidate stances on the following topic: "Federal Marriage Amendment to prevent same sex marriage"

Source: Christian Coalition Survey 10-CC-q3 on Aug 11, 2010

Opposes same-sex marriage.

Buck opposes the PVS survey question on same-sex marriage

Project VoteSmart infers summary responses from campaign statements and news reports The PVS survey summarizes candidate stances on the following topic: 'Marriage: Do you support same-sex marriage?'

Source: Project VoteSmart Inferred Survey 14-PVS-q3 on Sep 30, 2014

2012 Governor, House and Senate candidates on Civil Rights: Ken Buck on other issues:
CO Gubernatorial:
Bob Beauprez
John Hickenlooper
Matthew Hess
Tom Tancredo
CO Senatorial:
Amy Stephens
Cory Gardner
Mark Udall
Owen Hill
Randy Baumgardner

Newly-elected Democrats taking office Jan.2015:
AZ-7: Rep.-Elect Ruben Gallego
CA-11:Rep.-Elect Mark DeSaulnier
CA-31:Rep.-Elect Pete Aguilar(R⇒D)
CA-33:Rep.-Elect Ted Lieu
CA-35:Rep.-Elect Norma Torres
FL-2: Rep.-Elect Gwen Graham(R⇒D)
HI-1: Rep.-Elect Mark Takai
MA-6: Rep.-Elect Seth Moulton
MI-12:Rep.-Elect Debbie Dingell
MI-14:Rep.-Elect Brenda Lawrence
NE-2: Rep.-Elect Brad Ashford(R⇒D)
NJ-12:Rep.-Elect Bonnie Coleman
NY-4: Rep.-Elect Kathleen Rice
PA-13:Rep.-Elect Brendan Boyle
VA-8: Rep.-Elect Donald Beyer
Seated in special elections 2013-2014:
AL-1: Bradley Byrne(R)
FL-13:David Jolly(R)
FL-19:Curt Clawson(R)
IL-2: Robin Kelly(D)
LA-5: Vance McAllister(R)
MA-5: Katherine Clark(D)
MO-8: Jason Smith(R)
NC-12:Alma Adams(D)
NJ-1: Donald Norcross(D)
SC-1: Mark Sanford(R)
VA-7: Dave Brat(R)

Newly-elected Republicans taking office Jan.2015:
AR-2: Rep.-Elect French Hill
AR-4: Rep.-Elect Bruce Westerman
AL-6: Rep.-Elect Gary Palmer
CA-25:Rep.-Elect Steve Knight
CA-45:Rep.-Elect Mimi Walters
CO-4: Rep.-Elect Ken Buck
FL-26:Rep.-Elect Carlos Curbelo(D⇒R)
GA-1: Rep.-Elect Buddy Carter
GA-10:Rep.-Elect Jody Hice
GA-11:Rep.-Elect Barry Loudermilk
GA-12:Rep.-Elect Rick Allen(D⇒R)
IA-1: Rep.-Elect Rod Blum(D⇒R)
IA-3: Rep.-Elect David Young
IL-10:Rep.-Elect Robert Dold(D⇒R)
IL-12:Rep.-Elect Mike Bost(D⇒R)
More newly-elected Republicans taking office Jan.2015:
LA-5: Rep.-Elect Ralph Abraham
LA-6: Rep.-Elect Garret Graves
ME-2: Rep.-Elect Bruce Poliquin(D⇒R)
MI-4: Rep.-Elect John Moolenaar
MI-8: Rep.-Elect Mike Bishop
MI-11:Rep.-Elect Dave Trott
MN-6: Rep.-Elect Tom Emmer
MT-0: Rep.-Elect Ryan Zinke
NC-6: Rep.-Elect Mark Walker
NC-7: Rep.-Elect David Rouzer(D⇒R)
NH-1: Rep.-Elect Frank Guinta(D⇒R)
NJ-3: Rep.-Elect Tom MacArthur
NV-4: Rep.-Elect Cresent Hardy(D⇒R)
NY-1: Rep.-Elect Lee Zeldin(D⇒R)
NY-21:Rep.-Elect Elise Stefanik(D⇒R)
NY-24:Rep.-Elect John Katko
OK-5: Rep.-Elect Steve Russell
PA-6: Rep.-Elect Ryan Costello
TX-4: Rep.-Elect John Ratcliffe
TX-23:Rep.-Elect Will Hurd
TX-36:Rep.-Elect Brian Babin
UT-4: Rep.-Elect Mia Love(D⇒R)
VA-10:Rep.-Elect Barbara Comstock
WA-4: Rep.-Elect Dan Newhouse
WI-6: Rep.-Elect Glenn Grothman
WV-2: Rep.-Elect Alex Mooney
WV-3: Rep.-Elect Evan Jenkins(D⇒R)
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Page last updated: Feb 21, 2016