Gay Republicans are causing a major headache throughout the conservative party. While some Republican politicians are against having an openly gay official in office under their party, others are urging the GOP to be more tolerant and supportive towards gay congressional candidates. The party’s views on controversial subjects like same-sex marriage also seem to be slightly shifting.
Virginia Rep. Randy Forbes has reportedly gone on record in saying that financial support should be denied to some of the party’s gay congressional candidates, according to six insider sources who spoke with POLITICO. The statement is particularly controversial because two gay Republicans, Richard Tisei in northeastern Massachusetts and former city councilman Carl DeMaio in San Diego, will vie next year for seats held by Democrats.
But House Speaker John Boehner simply said “I do” when asked if his party should support gay candidates, urging Republicans to be more tolerant and focus on who is qualified for the job at hand. NRCC Chairman Greg Walden of Oregon also said that, “our decisions on the Republican nominees we support will not be based on race, gender or sexual orientation but will be based on the strength of their candidacy and their ability to defeat Democrats.”
More members of the GOP are also coming out in support of same-sex marriage, including Ohio Sen. Rob Portman, while several other Republicans have tried to distance themselves from anti-gay comments made from other members in their party. Log Cabin Republicans, which works to advocate equal rights for gays in the U.S., currently has chapters in 26 states and the District of Columbia.