The Republican National Committee is backing chairwoman Ronna McDaniel, after the head of the Oklahoma Republican Party called for McDaniel’s resignation over her support for a LGBT outreach initiative.
The GOP establishment seems to be leaning toward an inclusive, big tent movement.
RNC spokesperson Danielle Alvarez issued a statement to the Washington Post pushing back against a fundraising email by Oklahoma GOP Chairman John Bennett, who accused McDaniel of abandoning the party’s principles by promoting LGBT values.
Earlier this month, McDaniel announced the creation of the “RNC Pride Coalition,” an LGBT outreach effort in partnership with the Log Cabin Republicans.
- Alvarez said McDaniel’s support for the coalition “does not mean we are advocating for any policy or RNC platform change” and accused Bennett of lying about the issue.
- In an email sent to fundraisers Tuesday, Bennett said McDaniel “MUST Change Course or RESIGN” if “she cannot or will not stand for who we say we are,” the Daily Beast reported.
- Bennett, a hardline conservative who once called Islam a “cancer in our nation,” also criticized various policies supported by the Log Cabin Republicans, the most-prominent LGBT advocacy group on the right.
The Republican Party’s official platform, cited by Bennett in his 1,100-word fundraising email, still defines “natural marriage” as between “a man and a woman.”
FIGHT ON THE RIGHT
The unveiling of the “RNC Pride Coalition” at former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach, Florida ignited a fight on the right between social conservatives and the big tent crowd.
- “Conservatives in Log Cabin don’t just share our vision for a free, secure and prosperous America — they enrich it by adding unique perspectives to our party and recruiting even more diverse candidates and supporters to join our cause,” McDaniel said at the gala.
- But prominent right-wingers, including Rep. Marjorie Taylor-Greene, R-Ga., and The Daily Wire’s Matt Walsh, accused the GOP of embracing “leftist sexual identity politics.”
Meanwhile, Declan Leary, an editor at The American Conservative, argued that LGBT advocacy is incompatible with conservatism.
- The “Pride” movement “denies in practice (if not in theory) the moral limits that define conservatism, especially those aimed towards the preservation of the family as the foundation of the political order, setting up in their place the individual will and what [Leo] Strauss once called the ‘joyless quest for joy,’” he wrote in an essay published in early November.
Last week, some commenters on the right slammed newly-elected Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin, a Republican, for having an LGBT community member on staff.
Joshua Marin-Mora, Youngkin’s press assistant, faced criticism for displaying his pronouns, “he/him,” in his Twitter bio.
- Pedro Gonzalez, an associate editor at Chronicles Magazine, said Marin-Mora “supports virtually everything Youngkin’s voters voted against.”
- “This is peak GOP,” Gonzalez added.