(CBS) Tea Party-backed candidate Christine O'Donnell, who pulled off a stunning win for Delaware's Republican Senate nomination on Tuesday, has come under fire from the left for her views on masturbation, abortion, and abstinence.
O'Donnell first offered her views on masturbation in an MTV documentary called "Sex In The 90's" when she said "the Bible says that lust in your heart is committing adultery" and that "You can't masturbate without lust."
Therefore, she concluded, masturbation is wrong.
O'Donnell believes in a fundamentalist version of sexual "purity" that emphasizes thoughts and feelings as well as deeds. It's a view that resonates with many Americans.
To get another perspective, CBS News contacted former U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jocelyn C. Elders, another opinionated public figure who was fired from the Clinton White House for her outspoken views on sexuality.
Elders was thrust into the spotlight 15 years ago when she said, in response to a question at a U.N. AIDS conference, that it might be appropriate to teach young people about masturbation to keep them from engaging in riskier sexual behavior.
"I think that it is part of human sexuality, and perhaps it should be taught," Elders said at the time. She was fired soon after.
CBSnews.com: O'Donnell feels that there should be an absolute ban on abortion.
Elders: Rape is a despicable crime. Just as despicable is the idea that women who get pregnant should not have absolute control over their own bodies.
CBSnews.com: O'Donnell wrote in "The Case for Chastity" that she knows many "physical" virgins who are not "sexually pure." That's because these women look at porn, O'Donnell wrote. O'Donnell and her supporters believe that sexuality is "a gift from God," that should be saved for marriage for the purpose of procreation.
Elders: When talking about sexual health, we talk about the three "P's": Procreation, protecting your partner, and pleasure. 99 percent of sexual activity is for pleasure! Every sperm is not meant to be a baby.
CBSnews.com: Christine O'Donnell said, the "Bible says that lust in your heart is committing adultery. You can't masturbate without lust."
Elders: I think she would have a hard time finding support for her views in the Bible. I am a Methodist, a Christian. As a physician, we are sexual beings from birth until death, and the silence [around sexuality], the judging of others, is just wrong.
CBSnews.com: Do you still think about your time in the Clinton White House?
Elders: I loved being your Surgeon General. I said what I felt needed to be said. I have no regrets. President Clinton did what he felt he had to do as president.