Leaders of SPLC-designated hate groups rushed to defend leading presidential contender Michele Bachmann’s business, her husband Marcus’s clinic, from widespread publicity about their ex-gay “ministry and counseling.”

Peter Sprigg of the Family Research Council, which has been listed as a “hate group” by the SPLC, appeared on MSNBC alongside Log Cabin Republicans executive director R. Clarke Cooper.

“If this is indeed a Christian counseling center then is should not be surprising that the counselors help clients live their lives constituent with Christian values,” Sprigg said.

Head FRC hater Tony Perkins also made his warm feelings known for Michele and her husband’s discredited methods:

“Apart from Washington, D.C., and homosexual interest groups, the majority of the country will view Marcus’s work for what it is, a ministry of hope,” he said. “Pointing men and women who struggle with same-sex attractions to God isn’t ‘a discredited form of therapy,’ it’s the path to sexual healing. And it’s capable of bringing thousands of people out of bondage and into healthy behavior and a fuller relationship with Christ.”

Insane homo-hater Peter LaBarbera played the Xtian victim card:

“Folks, it sure didn’t take long for the liberal media to go into Christian-bashing mode against GOP presidential candidate Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.),” LaBarbera said in a statement. He called ABC’s report, a “comically biased hit-piece by ABC’s Brian Ross — featuring the militantly anti-Christian homosexual organization Truth Wins Out.”

Even the usually more objective David Brody of CBN News, a Pat Robertson joint (a subsidiary of which granted Michele her “law degree”) was quite overwrought, mistakenly attributing the Truth Wins Out undercover and hidden camera work to ABC’s Brian Ross:

“[ABC's] crew decided to do an ‘undercover investigation’ about the use of reparative therapy at the Christian clinic owned by Michele and Marcus Bachmann. It is designed to convert gays back to heterosexuality through prayer and a therapeutic clinical process,” he wrote. “First of all, you’re kidding me right? They did an undercover investigation to make the point that the healing power of Jesus Christ can transform lives? That’s what passes for an undercover investigation nowadays? Oy-gevalt.”

Many thanks to Andy Birkey of the Minnesota Independent for collecting these responses in his article. You should probably make the Independent a regular blog-stop during the state’s shutdown and Michele’s candidacy’s implosion over the ex-gay scandal.