Voters Rejected Pro-‘Gay’ Republicans
By Tony Perkins
While the GOP has plenty of victories to celebrate, their stubborn backing of far-Left Republicans isn’t one of them. Against the wishes of their base, House leaders threw their support — and plenty of cash — at a handful of extreme anti-values candidates — who, it turns out, no amount of money could make more attractive to conservatives.
For all the talk of expanding the GOP tent, the openly homosexual trio of Carl DeMaio (Calif.), Richard Tisei (Mass.), and Dan Innis (N.H.) were just as unpopular with voters as they were unfaithful to key issues. In Oregon, the Republicans’ same-sex “marriage” supporters fared just as poorly. Senate candidate Monica Wehby (R), a “social progressive” who made the redefinition of marriage a centerpiece of her campaign, lost handily to the Democratic incumbent.
FRC and friends sent a letter to House leaders explaining that our concern was not these candidates’ sexual orientation, but their policy orientation, which is openly hostile to the GOP’s stated principles. “Carl DeMaio, Richard Tisei, and Monica Wehby are antithetical to the Republican platform,” the conservative groups wrote. “Mr. DeMaio supports and aggressively advocates for the redefinition of marriage, and welcomed the judicial activism of the federal courts which stripped the people of California of their votes in support of maintaining marriage as the union of one man and one woman.”
DeMaio, whose race was arguably the most high-profile of the group, finally lost a nail-biter after more allegations of sexual misconduct tainted what was an already a shockingly anti-life, anti-marriage campaign. In a huge black eye to the House leadership, the people rejected the Establishment’s focus on the politically correct over the morally correct and refused to elect its liberal protégée.
For Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), it was a failed experiment in what they both called “minority outreach.” Fortunately for conservatives, the Republican National Committee took the opposite track, recognizing the grassroots’ pushback to its 2012 strategy. Unlike the RNC, which made a significant course correction after the base sounded off on the call for greater “diversity,” House leaders went out of their way to recruit anti-platform candidates.
Whether the sting of those losses is enough to keep the GOP from going off script again, no one knows. What we do know is that if they try, conservatives like Jim Garlow will be ready. In California, Pastor Garlow understands that pastors can no longer afford to be silent when candidates for office are openly hostile to religious liberty. Because anyone who’s followed the debate understands that something has to give in the tug-of-war over same-sex “marriage” — and that something is usually religious liberty. So Pastor Garlow did what every church in America should: he stood against those who want to destroy freedom from the pulpit. Like us, he knows that the threat is no longer on the steps of the church, it’s attempting to kick down its door as we saw in Houston.
In the face of this harassment, America’s pastors have — not just a right — but a responsibility to defend freedom by opposing anti-freedom candidates. From D.C. to California and everywhere in between, let’s hope more pastors take their cues from the church’s Watchmen and stand against every attempt to rob Christians of the freedom they came here seeking.
Tony Perkins is president of the Washington, D.C.-based Family Research Council. He is a former member of the Louisiana legislature where he served for eight years, and he is recognized as a legislative pioneer for authoring measures like the nation’s first Covenant Marriage law.
(Via FRC’s Washington Update. Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.)
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