Gates Town Supervisor Mark Assini – who’s running for Congress – is taking heat, for comments he made about the LGBTQ community. Some of those comments date back almost ten years.
Community activists and members from the LGBTQ community stood together in the Corn Hill neighborhood of Rochester gathered on Wednesday to call out Assini for a blog post published ten years ago.
In the post, Assini called transgender people “mentally disturbed individuals,” and agreed with commentators who called the LGBTQ community “sexual deviants.”
“These comments are cruel and incite hate,” said Thomas Warfield, a member of LGBTQ community. “And though these comments were from a while ago, our community is still too often the victim of this kind of speech – and enough is enough.”
“Sending out words that say you are something other, you are something different,” said Assemblyman Harry Bronson. “You are something not worthy, and you’re not respected. Those words matter. Mark Assini’s words matter.”
Bronson, who is openly gay, called Assini a bigot.
Bronson says Assini has made jokes about an openly gay member of congress being raped in prison and supported banning gay marriages.
Assini acknowledged his comments, but added his position on the issue has evolved.
“Do not judge people on things that went on ten, fifteen, twenty years ago,” Assini said. “People were in a different place. You now have a conservative republican. A conservative republican who is willing to stand with you.”
Mark Assini who is running for congress says this in an attempt by his opponent, Congresswoman Louise Slaughter, to solidify support in the LGBTQ community.
“Congresswoman Slaughter has hired an investigation team to dig up as much dirt about me as possible,” he said. “They have gone through twenty years of my past.”
But Bronson says this remains relevant because Assini has done little to walk back his position publicly.