When Indiana State Rep. Bob Morris wrote his fellow House Republicans a letter detailing why he wouldn't support a nonbinding resolution congratulating the Girl Scouts on the organization's 100th anniversary, he couldn't have predicted the uproar it would generate and how that letter would put him on the national stage.
Morris, who was elected to represent Fort Wayne in 2010, wrote that the Girl Scouts promote the sexualizing of young girls, abortion, homosexuality and cite "feminists, lesbians or Communists" as role models.
Morris' comments, as first detailed in Indiana on Monday, went viral on Tuesday as national media reported the story and as columnists weighed in, largely lampooning them.
Jimmy Kimmel lobbed jokes about Morris in his opening monologue on ABC on Tuesday night, drawing laughter by suggesting that Morris may be setting himself up as a potential running mate for Republican presidential hopeful Rick Santorum.
"The Girl Scouts sell cookies. They don't promote homosexuality. They promote obesity, and I can't think of anything more American than that," Kimmel said.
Reaction has been overwhelmingly negative to Morris' comments, with the Girl Scouts and troop leaders quick to defend themselves.
Crystal Livers-Powers, director of corporate communications at Indianapolis Power and Light, is a former Girl Scout, troop volunteer and had two daughters in the organization for more than 15 years.
"Girl Scouts has really just been a wonderful experience," she told RTV6's Jenna Kooi
. "My daughters and girls in my troops have gone on to do really wonderful things, and I know Girl Scouts has been a part of that."
Comments in stories on TheIndyChannel.com and on RTV6's RTV6's Facebook wall
were generally in strong opposition to Morris' remarks.
"He may be digging in, but I hope he realizes he's going to get buried in either the primary or fall election now," commented Bob Leppert.
"I'm all against what (Morris) has said about the Girl Scouts, and if he gets his info from the Internet, there is no telling what other information he gets from the Internet," commenter "ledostuck" said on TheIndyChannel.com
Others support Morris' stand against the Girl Scouts.
"It's refreshing that people stick to their guns for a change and not apologize," said Facebook commenter Jason McCoy.
Rep. Bob Morris Letter On Girl Scouts Of America
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