One of the two new senators announced by Stephen Harper on Dec 20 told Xtra in a 2008 interview he thinks being gay is a choice.

Rev Don Meredith, of the GTA Faith Alliance, and Larry Smith, a former CFL commissioner, will fill two vacancies in the Senate, giving the Conservatives an outright majority in the unelected body.


(Jenna Wakani)

Back in early 2008, Rev Meredith spoke to Xtra during his by-election run for the Toronto-Centre seat vacated by long-time Liberal MP Bill Graham. 

To a question about his personal position on same-sex marriage, the Conservative candidate replied, "It's the right of individuals to choose their orientation," and when asked if he thinks being gay is a choice he answered, "Individuals have chosen."

He also answered questions on the age of consent for anal sex, funding AIDS vaccine research and was asked if he thought homosexuality is a sin. Rev Meredith ducks the sin question, though he concedes, "We do the same physiological things — we need to eat, we need to sleep, we need food, we need shelter, we need good healthcare — that's the crucial thing."

Read the whole interview here.

Rev Meredith lost the by-election with only 12.5 percent of the vote.


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