What to Know
- City Council Speaker Corey Johnson is demanding an apology from Councilman Ruben Diaz Sr.
- Diaz, who opposes same-sex marriage, said the legislative body "is controlled by the homosexual community"
- A spokesman for Johnson issued a statement saying the comments "have no place in New York City"
The New York City Council speaker is demanding an apology from a council member who said the legislative body is "controlled by the homosexual community."
A spokesman for Speaker Corey Johnson issued a statement Friday saying comments by Ruben Diaz Sr. "have no place in New York City" and the Bronx Democrat should apologize to his colleagues and the LGBTQ community.
In a Spanish-language radio program, Diaz, who is a Pentecostal minister, said the homosexual community controls most of the 51 council members.
The 75-year-old, Puerto Rican-born politician, who opposes same-sex marriage, called Johnson a "homosexual married to another man." The speaker is openly gay and single.
Diaz later tweeted a correction to his statement about Johnson's marital status, but defended the rest of his statement.
"What’s homophobic about saying that the gay community controls the nyc [sic] city council?" Diaz tweeted. "I’m giving them credit for the power and influence they have."
Diaz is the father of Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., who tweeted that his father should apologize.
In a tweet, Diaz Jr. said his father's "sentiments are antagonistic, quarrelsome and wholly unnecessary. He should apologize."
Johnson and Diaz Sr. did not immediately respond to messages left on Saturday.