Republican Congressman Ralph Hall Accidentally Wandered into a Gay-Rights Soiree

Republican Congressman Ralph Hall of Rockwall isn't the most virulently homophobic member of Congress, but he's not exactly waving a rainbow flag either. On his website, he boasts of his support for "traditional family values," which he has expressed by decrying the decision to lift the military's ban on openly gay soldiers, fighting to continue to withhold federal benefits from same-sex couples and reiterating that marriage should be defined as a "union between one man and one woman."

So, it was a surprise to all when Hall wandered into a June 5 reception for the Victory Fund in D.C., an LGBT group dedicated to electing gay candidates to public office.

Hall, who just turned 90, had indeed wandered off course, which isn't to say that Hall wasn't greeted warmly. "One of the sponsors immediately greeted me, courteously welcomed us and offered refreshments," he later told CQ Roll Call.

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He chalked the mistake up to a scheduling error. He'd been invited to a different reception honoring another congressman.

"When I inquired about the congressman being honored, the sponsor did not know anything about that reception and presented his card," he told Roll Call. "At that moment I realized that this was not the reception I intended to attend, and I put down my glass, thanked the sponsor, and told him we would be leaving."

Then he skedaddled, but not before adding to his already considerable legend. Hall is not only the oldest, skydivingest-ever member of the House, he has now waltzed into the belly of the LGBT beast and emerged unscathed. The man never ceases to amaze.