For the first time ever, the Log Cabin Republicans will have a hand in shaping the GOP's official platform. Chris Johnson at the Washington Blade reports that LCR executive director R. Clarke Cooper and his team reached out to the Republican National Convention and asked if they can join the conservative group that will lay out the party's policy plans.
Now that four LCR members have been given the go-ahead, they're looking to first eradicate anti-gay language, but it may be an uphill battle.
"Just looking at the 2008 document, Log Cabin has gone through and we’ve noted language in there that’s either directly unhelpful, or seen as anti-gay, and have marked it for deletion," Cooper said. "We’ve also found language that could be strengthened to be more inclusive. That said, there’s going to be a completely new document. It’s not as if they’re taking the ’08 document and just updating it."
Cooper said the group has already identified language in the 2008 platform that it will push to remove in the 2012 document, including language related to marriage. Under the heading “Preserving Traditional Marriage,” the 2008 platform endorses the Federal Marriage Amendment and affirms passing same-sex marriage bans through state initiatives.
Cooper and company will have some stiff competition from social conservatives who have a longer and thicker relationship with the party at large, and the RNC makes no secret of its preference.
"The Log Cabin Republicans reached out to the RNC to share their ideas as well," said RNC spokesman Gary Howard. "Additionally, the Platform Staff hosted meetings with dozens of social conservative groups to emphasize the importance of keeping the GOP’s commitment to traditional marriage."
Jimmy LaSalvia, president of similarly conservative GOProud, is unimpressed by the LCR's collaboration with the RNC, which LaSalvia sees as pretty ineffectual.
"The truth of the matter is, the platform is a piece of paper," he said. LaSalvia "The platform conveys no rights and responsibilities, the platform does not have the force of law, and routinely the day after the platform is written candidates all over the country say they don’t agree with everything in the platform."