Saturday, May 24, 2014

Reaping what it sowed: GOP political exploitation of homophobia now working against the party

In Nebraska, outrageously and publicly homophobic Attorney General Jon Bruning lost his primary bid for governor by just over 2,000 votes in a state with nearly two million people. There are easily enough gay GOP Cornhuskers to have accounted for the stake just driven through the heart of Bruning's political ambitions.

Consider these factoids:
  • In Colorado, Democrat Sen. Mark Udal is bashing his GOP opponent for voting to deny LGBTs discrimination protection
  • In Arizona, Democrats plan to go after Republicans who passed a law (vetoed by Gov. Jan Brewer) giving businesses owned by homophobes a "religious liberty" bigot exemption to public accommodation laws
  • In Pennsylvania, GOP Gov. Tom Corbett, already unpopular, is getting more grief for comparing gay marriage to incest
     Some Republicans believe that mounting public support represents a danger to their party, and they are scrambling to prevent Democrats from using the issue of gay rights in the same way some in their own party did for years...
     Nevada Republicans dropped their opposition to gay marriage last month from the state party's platform, and a national campaign is underway to remove such language from the national party platform in 2016. Major Republican donors have formed a coalition to push the party to become more gay-friendly.
GOP political homophobia has been particularly costly to the party in Colorado:
Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet narrowly defeated a Republican challenge in 2010 after the GOP candidate compared homosexuality to alcoholism. The next year, Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper shamed Republicans in control of the state House for refusing to grant gay couples civil unions. The GOP lost control of the chamber in 2012, and Hickenlooper signed a civil unions bill last year.

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