Christine O'Donnell: Homosexuality an 'Identity Disorder'

O'Donnell believes gays and lesbians are disordered according to 2006 comments.

ByABC News
September 18, 2010, 1:34 PM

Sept. 20, 2010— -- Christine O'Donnell, the Republican U.S. Senate candidate from Delaware, has sought to reassure voters that her views on human sexuality are within the mainstream.

But newly revealed comments from 2006 show O'Donnell believed gays and lesbians suffer from an "identity disorder," putting her at odds with the American medical and psychological community and a majority of popular opinion.

"People are created in God's image. Homosexuality is an identity adopted through societal factors. It's an identity disorder," she told Wilmington News Journal reporter Victor Greto.

Greto paraphrased the comments in a 2006 profile of O'Donnell, first resurfaced by the Washington Post's Greg Sargent last week. Greto later provided Sargent the exact quote and confirmed it to ABC News.

The O'Donnell campaign did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Homosexuality has been considered a normal variation of human sexuality for nearly four decades. The American Psychiatric Association and American Psychological Association both declassified homosexuality as a mental disorder in the early 1970s.

A majority of Americans find gay and lesbian relations morally acceptable, according to the most recent Gallup poll.

O'Donnell's remarks on homosexuality are the latest in a string of controversial statements on conservative social issues that have surfaced in the days since she clinched the Delaware GOP nomination by upsetting Rep. Mike Castle.

She has previously expressed support for abstinence and opposition to the use of condoms and masturbation, and admitted to a brief dalliance with witchcraft.

"I dabbled into witchcraft -- I never joined a coven. But I did, I did. I dabbled into witchcraft. I hung around people who were doing these things. I'm not making this stuff up. I know what they told me they do," she said in an appearance on "Politically Incorrect" with Bill Maher.

"One of my first dates with a witch was on a satanic altar, and I didn't know it. I mean, there's little blood there and stuff like that," she said. "We went to a movie and then had a midnight picnic on a satanic altar."