The GOP’s rebranding effort continues to self-destruct. In the latest round of “you’ve got to be kidding me” arguments, party leaders are fighting over whether the party should even fund their own candidates’ races if the candidates are gay.
Leading the charge to block all things lavender is Rep. Randy Forbes, a senior Republican from Virginia. Forbes has been pushing the National Republican Congressional Committee to block funding for gay candidates. While it may be hard to imagine that such individuals exist within the inhospitable confines of the GOP, there are indeed two potential candidates with an eye on 2014: . Richard Tisei, who narrowly lost a race in Massachusetts last year, and Carl DeMaio, who unsuccessfully ran for mayor of San Diego last year.
Meantime, House Speaker John Boehner says that the party should support gay candidates. In fact, Tisei and DeMaio received checks for their races last year from such GOP House leaders as Eric Cantor and Kevin McCarthy.
Forbes is unimpressed. “GOP leaders can do whatever they want to do,” he told Politico. What he objects to is the NRCC being involved. That group collects dues from House members to fund candidacies. Forbes is the type who objects to military personnel wearing uniforms at gay pride events, so you can tell where he’s coming from.
The debate proves once again that for some hard-core conservatives, principles matter more than winning, which is an expensive proposition in politics.