GAY SEX: AT LEAST IT’S BETTER THAN MAN-ON-DOG SEX….Via Atrios, Andrew Sullivan thinks that Rick Santorum has been misquoted. You can read Sullivan’s argument and decide for yourself, but I’m not sure he really makes his case. Yeah, Santorum is apparently arguing that the government should have the power to outlaw any kind of sex, not just gay sex, but his take on gays comes out pretty clearly a little later in the interview:

SANTORUM: That’s not to pick on homosexuality. It’s not, you know, man on child, man on dog, or whatever the case may be. It is one thing. And when you destroy that you have a dramatic impact on the quality ?

AP: I’m sorry, I didn’t think I was going to talk about “man on dog” with a United States senator, it’s sort of freaking me out.

SANTORUM: And that’s sort of where we are in today’s world, unfortunately. The idea is that the state doesn’t have rights to limit individuals’ wants and passions. I disagree with that. I think we absolutely have rights because there are consequences to letting people live out whatever wants or passions they desire. And we’re seeing it in our society.

Santorum makes it pretty clear that of course he has nothing against homosexuals, just against nasty homosexual sex, even in private. And, you know, at least it’s not as bad as man-on-dog sex.

So this is quite a choice we’re left with: is it better to be (a) a bigot who’s in favor of government regulation of gay sex, or (b) a bluenose who’s in favor of government regulation of all kinds of sex? Hum dee hum, that’s a tough one, better ask my local GOP party chairman about that.

Santorum, of course, is chairman of the Republican Senate Caucus, the #3 spot in the Republican Senate leadership, which leads us to wonder what the Republican party’s position is on all this. As Sullivan notes, “We now know where Santorum stands. But what about his party?”

UPDATE: I know I keep harping on this, but I really think the Democrats could make some electoral hay with gay rights as a (secondary) campaign issue. There are just so many horribly bigoted comments about gays from Republican politicians ? comments that go much further than even some conservative voters are willing to tolerate. If it becomes a campaign issue, they are forced to either repudiate the bigots, which will lose them part of their core constituency, or else stay silent, which might well break off a chunk of their moderate supporters. Surely someone can figure out how to run with this?