Here are some of the week’s most notable quotes culled from news reports from across Texas, and beyond.
Republican National Committee member Dave Agema, explaining that LGBT people support health care reform because AIDS causes them to die earlier in life. Agema, speaking at a GOP holiday party in Michigan, said that while working with American Airlines, he repeatedly witnessed gay colleagues claiming AIDS victims as lovers, just so they could get health care coverage.
Folks, they (gay people) want free medical because they’re dying between 30 and 44 years old. To me, it’s a moral issue. It’s a Biblical issue. Traditional marriage is where it should be and it’s in our platform. Those in our party who oppose traditional marriage are wrong.
TIME Managing Editor Nancy Gibbs, making the magazine’s annual announcement on Wednesday.
The heart is a strong muscle; he’s proposing a rigorous exercise plan. And in a very short time, a vast, global, ecumenical audience has shown a hunger to follow him. For pulling the papacy out of the palace and into the streets, for committing the world’s largest church to confronting its deepest needs and for balancing judgment with mercy, Pope Francis is TIME’s 2013 Person of the Year.
Fox News host Megyn Kelly, upset that people might try to portray Santa as non-white.
Just because it makes you feel uncomfortable doesn’t mean it has to change. Jesus was a white man, too. It’s like we have, he’s a historical figure that’s a verifiable fact, as is Santa, I just want kids to know that. How do you revise it in the middle of the legacy in the story and change Santa from white to black?
Fox News host Gretchen Carlson, lashing out at atheists in Florida for putting up a Festivus display next to a Christian display at the state Capitol building.
Why do I have to drive around with my kids to look for a nativity scenes and be, like, ‘Oh, yeah, kids, look, there’s baby Jesus behind the Festivus pole made out of beer cans! It’s nuts!
Hemant Mehta, on the legal and political bind Oklahoma lawmakers find themselves in because they passed legislation allowing religious symbols on the grounds of the state capitol.
If the Commission votes yes on the proposal, conservatives will flip out. If they vote no, they’re just inviting a lawsuit. This is beautiful.
U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas.
If you were completely areligious, completely atheistic, but you wanted to have a free country, and you wanted to have it safe and protected, then it would sound like, from historical purposes, that it might be a good thing to encourage those who believe in God to keep doing so. Because when a nation’s leaders honor that God, that nation is protected. It’s only when it turns away that it falls.
BONUS: The four GOP candidates for Texas lieutenant governor pander, rinse, repeat.