Rep. Trent Franks (R) of Arizona is quite a source of right-wing wisdom. Last week, the congressman joked, “In Arizona, sometimes to gain office you have to have shot someone,” a line Gabrille Giffords’ family probably wouldn’t appreciate.

This week, Franks chatted with Family Research Council president Tony Perkins to argue that if same-sex couples are allowed to get married, “it literally is a threat to the nation’s survival.”

“We understand that when we’re granting the rights of marriage, that that’s a special right Tony, that’s something we have suggested is clearly the best possible way to see children raised through the best possible environment to launch the next generation, we believe that with all of our hearts as a society, I think most people understand that. So we’ve set aside this special area of the law that says we’re going to respect traditional marriage of a man and a woman because that is the launching pad of the next generation. Let’s face it; we have made a special exception in the law that gives special consideration and recognition to that.

“And when people would come along and blur that distinction and say ‘well that should apply in every way’ it not only is a complete undermining of the principles of family and marriage and the hope of future generations but it completely begins to see our society break down to the extent that that foundational unit of the family that is the hope of survival of this country is diminished to the extent that it literally is a threat to the nation’s survival in the long run.”

Admittedly , it’s tough to keep track of all the instances in which Franks has been an embarrassment to himself. Remember the time he said African Americans were better off under slavery? How about the time he described President Obama as an “enemy of humanity“? Remember when he asked the House Sergeant at Arms to start looking for Muslim “spies” on congressional committees? Or when he claimed to speak for fallen American troops, saying the servicemen and women who were killed in war agree with him on economic policy?

And who can forget Franks’ talk about impeaching the president over defending the Defense of Marriage Act in court?

Remember earlier this year, when “Meet the Press” invited Franks on to discuss civility in our public discourse? I do.

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Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.