Wednesday, September 08, 2004
Via Daily Kos: America's most befuddling demographic group has finally decided to stop wearing the "KICK ME" sign:
The board of Log Cabin Republicans, the largest group for gay men and lesbians in the party, voted overwhelming [sic] last night against endorsing President Bush for re-election because of his support for a proposed constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.Heroism in action!
The decision ends six months of soul-searching as the group, which endorsed Mr. Bush in 2000 and Bob Dole in 1996, wrestled with its divided loyalties.
Although the group was immediately critical when the president announced his support for the amendment in February, it pointedly refrained from ruling out an endorsement. Its effort to balance loyalty to the party with opposition to a major item on the Republican agenda has made it a target of criticism from both supporters and opponents of the proposed amendment . . . .
In a statement afterward, Patrick Guerriero, executive director of Log Cabin Republicans, cited exit polls showing that more than one million gay men and lesbians voted for Mr. Bush in 2000. That included 45,000 in the pivotal state of Florida, which Mr. Bush carried by roughly 500 votes.
"Some will accuse us of being disloyal," Mr. Guerriero said. "It was actually the White House who was disloyal" to those gay voters, he continued.
Representatives of the Bush campaign did not return phone calls seeking comment.
Despite the president's support for the proposed amendment and the Republican Party's opposition to recognizing same-sex unions or other civil rights for gay men and lesbians, Mr. Guerriero said the group was not crossing the aisle.
Log Cabin, he said, "proudly supported the president's firm leadership in the war on terror," adding, "We especially applaud the president's leadership in cutting taxes for American families and small businesses, his belief in free-market principles and his compassionate and historic leadership in the global fight against H.I.V./AIDS."