LGBT Republicans are having a difficult time gaining acceptance from their conservative peers.
Case in point: The Log Cabin Republicans — a group of gay Republicans who advocate for LGBT rights within the party — has been banned from the Texas GOP state convention.
While the Conservative Political Action Conference, one of the biggest Republican events, recently lifted its ban against the group, members are still not allowed to attend many other GOP functions, according to Pink News.
Just this month, the Texas GOP barred the group from having a stall at its 2018 state convention, which makes this the 20th consecutive year they have been banned from attending the event.
On April 7, the State Republican Executive Committee voted to deny the group permission to attend once again. Apparently, a “clear majority” of lawmakers voted to refuse the group’s access after two hours of debating.
Unsurprisingly, many of the lawmakers claimed that religious objections to the organization’s mission were the driving force behind the decision.
Additionally, it is believed that the group’s attendance would contradict the GOP state platform, which maintains that “homosexuality is a chosen behavior that is contrary to the fundamental unchanging truths that has been ordained by God.”
Although they are clearly being shunned, the group seems to be taking the denial in stride. The Log Cabin Republicans state chairman Michael Baker simply said, “Nothing happens overnight.”
He reportedly added that he was “disappointed but not surprised,” noting he’d “hoped by 2018 we could have been a lot further than we are, but here we are.”
Despite his disappointment at the party’s failure to embrace progressive change, Baker said he will still attend the convention as an individual “to work for the unity of the party.”
Furthermore, he said that members of his group mostly back all other components of the GOP platform aside from its dated position on LGBT rights.
While Baker’s response was mildly critical of the party, Houston Log Cabin Republicans chief Marco Roberts took the complete opposite approach and went as far as to defend the lawmakers who voted the group out. He argued that the group should “do more” to make a stronger case for them to be welcomed into the convention.
“Some [representatives] told me privately afterward, in explaining their no votes, that they felt that we needed to do more to make our case at the state convention,” Roberts said. “We’re going to take this opportunity to educate folks more about what Log Cabin Republicans really do stand for and what is it we’re trying to do.”
It should be noted, however, that while the Log Cabin Republicans appear to remain loyal to their party, they are not necessarily fans of President Donald Trump.
As Pink News points out, the group strongly opposed several of Trump's anti-LGBT political moves, such as backing Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore and implementing a ban against transgender people serving in the military.
It's tough to ignore the ironic fact that this group and other LGBT Republicans are being blatantly discriminated against by the very people they consider political allies. The entire party's platform is largely built upon homophobia, and yet there are still those like the Log Cabin Republicans who remain hopeful they will be welcomed.
Banner/Thumbnail Credits: Reuters, Brendan McDermid