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File photo of boxes from the U.S. Agency for International Development by Cheryl Ravelo/Reuters

USAID official fired after anti-LGBTQ social media posts

WASHINGTON (AP) — The deputy White House liaison for the U.S. Agency for International Development has been fired after posting a series of anti-LGBTQ tweets and complaining of anti-Christian bias by her now former colleagues.

Officials said Merritt Corrigan was fired on Monday just hours after sending the torrent of tweets that also accused Democratic lawmakers of a “corrupt campaign” to oust her from her job. A USAID spokeswoman confirmed that Corrigan was no longer employed by the agency.

Democrats, gay rights groups and others had criticized Corrigan’s hiring earlier this year because of past comments she made about gay, lesbian and transgender people. Democrats in Congress had demanded her resignation. On Monday, Corrigan took to Twitter to say that “gay marriage isn’t marriage” and accuse the media of attacking her for her Christian beliefs.

“For too long, I’ve remained silent as the media has attacked me for my Christian beliefs, which are shared by the majority of Americans,” she wrote in the first of several tweets. “Let me clear: Gay marriage isn’t marriage; Men aren’t women; US-funded Tunisian LGBT soap operas aren’t America.”

She also said that the U.S. was losing the international battle for influence “because we now refuse to help countries who don’t celebrate sexual deviancy.” Corrigan said she would expose the anti-Christian bias at USAID at a news conference later this week.

USAID chief John Barsa had previously defended Corrigan and in confirming Corrigan’s departure, USAID spokeswoman Pooja Jhunjhunwala said the agency takes any claim of discrimination seriously. “We will investigate any complaints of anti-Christian bias Ms. Corrigan has raised during her tenure at the agency,” she said.