'Duck Dynasty' Star Phil Robertson to Speak at Republican Conference

Image: 'Duck Dynasty' Star Phil Robertson to Speak at Republican Conference

Wednesday, 28 May 2014 08:20 AM

By Michael Mullins

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"Duck Dynasty" patriarch Phil Robertson, fresh off another bout of controversy for more anti-gay comments, will be speaking at the Republican Leadership Conference on Thursday in New Orleans.

The 68-year-old will be joined by an array of prominent Republicans, including former House Speaker Newt Gingrich; senators Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, and Ron Johnson; Texas Gov. Rick Perry and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal; representatives Michele Bachmann and Marsha Blackburn; as well as former Rep. Allen West and former Sen. Rick Santorum.

Robertson recently rekindled a controversial issue during an Easter Sunday sermon to parishioners at his West Monroe, Louisiana, church, in which he defended his prior detrimental statements regarding homosexuality while taking on the media and claiming that those who cast him in a bad light in the press didn't know his initial rant was based on scripture.

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Paraphrasing a verse from the Corinthians, Robertson said in his sermon, "Neither the sexually immoral, nor the idolators, nor adulterers, nor male prostitutes, nor homosexual offenders, nor thieves, nor greedy, nor drunkards, nor slanderers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God."

In December, Robertson was suspended by "Duck Dynasty" network A&E following an interview he gave to GQ magazine in which he compared homosexuality to bestiality and to what he sees as the deterioration of a culture through sexual promiscuity.

In the interview, Robertson told the magazine, "Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there — bestiality, sleeping around with this woman and that woman and that woman and those men."

A&E subsequently suspended Robertson indefinitely from "Duck Dynasty," however, due to fan backlash and the family saying they might not continue on with the show without Robertson, the network relented and lifted the suspension.

Soon after the suspension was lifted, Jindal told reporters in December, "I am glad to hear that the folks at A&E came to their senses and recognized that tolerance of religious views is more important than political correctness," adding, "Today is a good day for the freedoms of speech and religious liberty."

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Robertson's latest remarks in his church were not addressed by A&E, which is preparing for its sixth season of "Duck Dynasty" that is scheduled to begin June 11.

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