Bill Gates, Former Boy Scout: Lift the Gay Ban

Billionaire Bill Gates thinks it's time for the Boy Scouts of America to end its ban on gay leaders and members.

The philanthropist and Microsoft co-founder gave his opinion Wednesday night during the inaugural installment of Politico's new interview series, Playbook Cocktails, at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C.

When the ex-Boy Scout was asked if he believed the organization should move forward with lifting the ban on gay members, he said it "absolutely" should.

Politico's D.C. bureau chief, Mike Allen, quickly asked why.

"Because it's 2013," Gates said, prompting the crowd to erupt in a round of thunderous applause.

During the course of the interview, Gates also told Allen that current immigration policy is the biggest impediment to U.S. job growth, and that he's worried about gridlock in Washington and the so-called sequestration.

"You don't run a business like this," Gates said of the federal government. "This is a non-optimal path … a business that is maximizing its output would proceed along a different path."