An awkward scene erupted at a campaign event on Friday when Mike Pence was confronted by a heckler who loudly proclaimed his own homosexuality while also accusing the former vice president of sharing that same orientation, as the Washington Examiner reported.
The bizarre events unfolded during an appearance in New Hampshire just after Pence registered for the Republican presidential primary ballot in the Granite State.
As Pence spoke to a group of assembled reporters about his rationale for mounting a presidential campaign in the current cycle, the heckler boisterously interjected with hs startling claims.
“Mike Pence, are you going to tell about us?” the man said. “You promised today was our Coming Out Day,” he added.
The man continued his statement, telling the group, “Mike Pence and I are gay. We're gay!”
“I'll admit your John Deere is bigger than mine,” the heckler went on, before being escorted away from the scene.
Clearly caught off guard by the man's sudden outburst, Pence attempted to continue his remarks to the assembled journalists.
Amid the ranting, Pence, somewhat rattled, said, “You're going to meet our campaign challenge in our campaign to the American people.”
New Hampshire Secretary of State David Scanlan did his best to intervene, yelling, “Sir!” and telling the heckler to apologize to the former vice president.
Pence persevered, managing to add, “We don't know what the future holds for our little family, but we know who holds the future. We entrust ourselves to the judgment of the people of the Granite State.”
Friday's outburst was not the only recent accusation of illicit homosexuality among high-profile politicians, as former President Barack Obama was also the subject of allegations of a similar nature.
As the Daily Mail reported last month, a man named Larry Sinclair stepped forward to revive prior assertions that he had sexual relations with Obama in the late 1990s and also indulged in cocaine use with the man who would later go on to become president.
Sinclair, whose resume includes a conviction for fraud, initially came forth with his claims about Obama over 15 years ago, though he has yet to offer concrete proof of the supposed encounters.
While many are therefore inclined to take Sinclair's allegations with a large grain of salt, Obama himself reportedly once told a girlfriend, “You see, I make love to men daily, but in the imagination,” lending – at least for some – a hint of potential credibility to the tale.