Politics

Report: Rep. Pete Sessions Said Orlando Club Is Not Gay

| by Michael Allen
Rep. Pete Sessions of TexasRep. Pete Sessions of Texas

Republican Rep. Pete Sessions of Texas reportedly said on June 14 that Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, was not a gay club.

Sessions claims the club is a "young person's club," according to Talking Points Memo.

The club, which was the scene of the worst mass shooting in U.S history on June 12, has said otherwise.

On March 24, the club stated on its website: "Experience Pulse, a world of fun and fantasy. Orlando’s hottest gay bar located in the heart of downtown," according to an archived version.

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After a discussion with Sessions, National Journal reporter Daniel Newhauser tweeted: "Asked Rules Chair Sessions if Orlando shooting changes calculation on LGBT Maloney amdmt. He argued Pulse was not a gay club," Talking Points Memo reports.

In a following tweet, Newhauser quoted Sessions as saying: "It was a young person’s nightclub, I’m told. And there were some [LGBT ppl] there, but it was mostly Latinos."

While there were some Latino names on the list of victims, it is entirely possible that Latino people can be gay.

Newhauser was asking Sessions about his position on banning federal contractors from discriminating against LGBT employees.

Caroline Boothe, Sessions' communications director, said Newhauser's quotes of Sessions were "taken out of context without the background information."

"What my boss meant to say was that there weren't only gay individuals at the club but people from all walks of life were present," Boothe added.

Boothe did not say how Sessions knew there were non-gay individuals at the gay club.

AR-15 assault weapons, like the type used by the Orlando terrorist, were banned under a 1994 law that expired in 2004.

During the 2004 presidential debate, then-Democratic presidential candidate Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts criticized President George W. Bush for not renewing the ban. He warned that AR-15s could end up in the hands of terrorists, notes Crooks And Liars:

Because of the president's decision today, law enforcement officers will walk into a place that will be more dangerous. Terrorists can now come into America and go to a gun show, and without even a background check, buy an assault weapon today. And that's what Osama Bin Laden's handbook said because we captured it in Afghanistan, it encouraged them to do it. So I believe America is less safe.

Sources: Talking Points Memo, PulseOrlandoClub.com via Archive, Crooks And Liars / Photo Credit: U.S. Congress/Wikimedia Commons

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