Sen. John McCain's (R-Ariz.) primary challenger, former Arizona congressman J.D. Hayworth, warned this past weekend that the same-sex marriage decision handed down by the Massachusetts Supreme Court is so loose in its logic and wording that it could lead to a man marrying his horse.
Appearing on Orlando, Fla. radio station WORL on Sunday, the Arizona conservative had what could be described as a Rick Santorum "man on dog" moment.
"You see, the Massachusetts Supreme Court, when it started this move toward same-sex marriage, actually defined marriage -- now get this -- it defined marriage as simply, 'the establishment of intimacy,'" Hayworth said. "Now how dangerous is that? I mean, I don't mean to be absurd about it, but I guess I can make the point of absurdity with an absurd point -- I guess that would mean if you really had affection for your horse, I guess you could marry your horse. It's just the wrong way to go, and the only way to protect the institution of marriage is with that federal marriage amendment that I support."
The clip, which was forwarded to the Huffington Post by a Republican source, is a deliberate over-interpretation of the Massachusetts law, which in addition to not prompting man-steed nuptials has actually helped chip away at the state's divorce rate.
Indeed, Hayworth, who favors a federal amendment that would limit marriage to one man and one woman, could harm his image with these remarks. Nearly seven years ago, then-senator Rick Santorum (R-Penn.) was asked a rather benign question about homosexuality during an interview with USA Today, and offered a response that has gone down in the annals of political head-turners.
"In every society, the definition of marriage has not ever to my knowledge included homosexuality," Santorum said. "That's not to pick on homosexuality. It's not, you know, man on child, man on dog, or whatever the case may be."