Haley Barbour joins Tim Pawlenty and Mike Huckabee in wanting to reinstate the ban on gays in the military, opposing a policy now supported by 80 percent of the public and a majority of servicemembers. He made the commitment on the radio show of the extreme right Christianist, Bryan Fischer. Now remember what we have been told about the Tea Party and the current GOP: they are focused on the size of government, debt and spending and are downplaying social issues. The latter is not true. Their position on the military ban is aggressively reactionary.

And Bryan Fischer, who has made this issue a litmus test for support, is one of the most radical theocrats out there. Fischer has argued that Adolf Hitler was "an active homosexual" and that the most ferocious Nazi storm-troopers were gay because heterosexuals were not sadistic enough. Homosexuals, according to Fischer, "had no limits in the savagery and brutality they were willing to inflict ... the Brownshirts were male homosexuals." On his blog, he has written that

"Homosexuality gave us Adolph Hitler [sic], and homosexuals in the military gave us the Brown Shirts, the Nazi war machine and six million dead Jews."

This is speech designed to demonize gay people in the most offensive way possible.

Fischer, for good measure, wants to add a Muslim ban to the gay ban in the military; wants to alter immigration laws to prefer Protestants (Catholics are too pro-gay); and has written that "the superstition, savagery and sexual immorality of native Americans ... [made] them morally disqualified from sovereign control of American soil."

Fischer is to the right as Farrakhan is to the left. And yet today, Fischer had on his show as guests Newt Gingrich, Mike Huckabee, and Haley Barbour. He has already had T-Paw.

Every now and again, you see just how extremist the GOP now is. In my view, journalists should ask these candidates how they can associate themselves with a bigot and hate-monger like this man. If Farrakhan is out of bounds on the left (as he should be), why is Fischer a non-issue for the right?

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