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Gay Conservative Group GOProud Comes Out for Marriage Equality

Gay conservative group GOProud has never officially backed marriage equality, until today.

LasalviaChris Geidner reports:

"We support same-sex marriage, civil marriage," GOProud executive director Jimmy LaSalvia said.

The move follows a decision by the GOProud board earlier this month to expand the group's mission to include state-level work. It also comes after, LaSalvia noted, the re-election of a president who supports same-sex couples' marriage rights, while some in the Republican Party are urging their party to reassess their position on the issue.

Since its founding in 2009, GOProud has always opposed the federal Defense of Marriage Act, calling the law a "federal power grab," but it avoided the underlying issue of marriage rights. In the course of a 285-word statement provided to BuzzFeed on "marriage and relationship recognition" being released publicly Friday, though, the group declares, "Where civil marriage is possible, we support civil marriage."

GOProud's Jimmy LaSalvia told Geidner that the group will be forming individual efforts in the states, and that is why they've decided to weigh in on the issue:

The group, which he said had nearly a $350,000 budget in 2012 that came from about 500 donors, is starting off by supporting the marriage equality bills in Illinois, Minnesota and Rhode Island. Asked about the bills, LaSalvia said the group support them, noting, "Where it is being considered and where it is possible, we support it and we're going to be there."

Here's the group's statement:

Since our founding, GOProud has worked exclusively on federal issues. Because marriage has been a state issue since the founding of our country, we have had no official position on marriage or relationship recognition. We have supported, and continue to support, the repeal of DOMA, and we oppose any effort to federalize marriage though a constitutional amendment. Now that GOProud's Board of Directors has voted to begin work on the state and local level, we believe it is important to lay out our principles when it comes to marriage and relationship recognition.

GOProud believes that stable, loving, committed relationships are the cornerstone of our society and should be protected and encouraged for all couples - including gay and lesbian couples. We believe that the decision about how to best do this is one that should be made at the state level and that these decisions are best made by the people directly or through their elected representatives - not by unelected judges.

Where civil marriage is possible, we support civil marriage. Where civil unions are possible, we support civil unions. Where domestic partner benefits are possible, we support domestic partner benefits. As federalists, we do not believe in a one-size-fits-all approach on almost any issue and that includes relationship recognition for gay couples.

We are firmly committed to winning hearts and minds, which is why we understand that not everyone who doesn't support marriage for gay couples is automatically a bigot or homophobe. We understand that there are people of deep faith who may have religious objections to marriage. We respect those differences and believe that no church or religious institution should ever be force to solemnize a marriage that is against its teachings.

As you may recall, during the last election cycle LaSalvia called gay marriage a "distraction" issue as he made the media rounds pumping the group's support for Mitt Romney.

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Comments

  1. Not sure if I want to say "Better late than never" or "Shut up and let the grown-ups talk."

    Eh. Either works.

    Posted by: Cal | Jan 18, 2013 10:57:34 AM


  2. About time...

    Posted by: Lucas H | Jan 18, 2013 10:58:05 AM


  3. These people have mental problems.

    Posted by: Trev | Jan 18, 2013 10:58:16 AM


  4. Did Prissy Barron marry his husband in a state that got marriage equality "at the hands of judicial activists?" The answer is yes. These queens give me gas.

    Posted by: Gigi | Jan 18, 2013 11:13:05 AM


  5. What a bizarre group. "Yes, we've finally decided that we support our own rights. Sort of." Well good for you!

    Posted by: Paul R | Jan 18, 2013 11:15:04 AM


  6. How come before the election none of these conservative gay groups were actually for marriage equality and were willing to vote for an idiot? Suddenly after the election they all come out in favour...what did I miss?

    Posted by: Will | Jan 18, 2013 11:17:25 AM


  7. What a novel idea!

    Posted by: Bam! | Jan 18, 2013 11:17:44 AM


  8. Does it mean these self-loathing homo-sexualles are finally gaining some self-acceptance or is it just another convenient political stance? They see which way the wind is blowing and amble to get in front of it.

    Posted by: Alex Parrish | Jan 18, 2013 11:21:38 AM


  9. Gee, aren't they ahead of the curve, finally joining the team after the heavy lifting has been done for them. At least they're consistently pathetic.

    Posted by: Ernie | Jan 18, 2013 11:46:23 AM


  10. Nothing but a bunch of self-serving, opportunistic Jewish Nazis

    Posted by: Steve | Jan 18, 2013 11:48:57 AM


  11. So, what do they stand for?

    I guess all laws that benefit rich white men, even if that means supporting gay marriage.

    How quaint.....

    Posted by: TonyJazz | Jan 18, 2013 11:53:59 AM


  12. '... proud" of what?

    Posted by: mikemike | Jan 18, 2013 12:04:43 PM


  13. The news today . . . . Manti Te'o, Armstrong, Wayne Lapierre, now these nuts. I feel so normal all of a sudden.

    Posted by: melvin | Jan 18, 2013 12:06:39 PM


  14. that was more vague than Jodie Foster...

    curious to see what specifics on a state level they'll be doing.

    and whether they'll criticize the money being waste defending DOMA by the GOP.

    "which is why we understand that not everyone who doesn't support marriage for gay couples is automatically a bigot or homophobe."

    translation: don't worry, we're still incapable of standing up for the truth!

    Posted by: LittleKiwi | Jan 18, 2013 12:35:49 PM


  15. they're still not too keen on that whole Integration thing, though....

    Posted by: LittleKiwi | Jan 18, 2013 12:42:37 PM


  16. All these groups put out statements to maximize their funding potential. I guess they feel marriage is a winning issue. Since many live in DC, they can already get married.

    Posted by: anon | Jan 18, 2013 12:43:11 PM


  17. We come out for marriage, benefits, civil unions, whatever is cool. Well, isn't just stoopid. What about the equal protection under the 14th Amendment. If one state allows marriage and it's not allowed next door, who's to stop the next state from denying benefits that originate from the feds, such as SS survivor, or medicare/medicaid despite a valid license. THAT is a FEDERAL MATTER which needs to enforce a marriage license duly approved by one state is then valid in all states; the removal of DOMA is the first step. Which is what GOProud claims to be looking at. But to put in the crap about whatever floats their boat is cool by us says they are NOT ready for any support. More lap dogs trying to eat the crumbs dropped by the rich old white men. They need to get up off their hands and knees and start acting like men and full fledged citizens and demand complete removal of DOMA, complete transference of all marriage licenses to all states, and respect for their gay fellows (I'm including all in that statement.

    Posted by: Steven Jaeger | Jan 18, 2013 1:01:15 PM


  18. Yes, I did deliberately use a slave reference because that's what they sound like.

    Posted by: Steven Jaeger | Jan 18, 2013 1:21:54 PM


  19. I'm curious how they justify having the word "Proud" in their name. LaSalvia and GOProud aren't late to the party--they're staying at the same lame party they've been at for years, no matter how they parse it. If you're a "federalist" gay then that simply means that state rights trump civil rights, period. It means one of two things. Either you could care less about the idea of basic civil rights in the federal Constitution (and would probably have supported allowing some states to keep slavery on the books, for example). Or you simply don't think people who have an LGBT identity count as a suspect class when considering equal protection, or that marriage and family-making aren't fundamental rights. Both viewpoints are not acceptable as "gay rights" positions.

    Posted by: Stefan | Jan 18, 2013 2:17:35 PM


  20. Where X is possible, we support X. With support like this, we don't need enemies.

    Posted by: Diogenes Arktos | Jan 18, 2013 2:27:51 PM


  21. It is so obvious from these comments how terrified Democrats and the Far Left are by the possibility that the Republican Party will at some point drop its homophobic stances......and by do doing will be able to attract a majority of gay men to its side, which could swing the electoral majority back to their side for some time to come.

    Gay men are actually a natural constituency for Republicans--most are affluent and would benefit from Republican economic policies and many would like to leave a Democratic Party that has become so overtly hostile to white males, where their white maleness increasingly makes them stand out like sore thumbs at any Democratic Party function.

    It will be interesting to see how this develops over the next decade or two.

    Posted by: Rick | Jan 18, 2013 3:12:11 PM


  22. the GOP won't be dropping their anti-gay policies any time soon, nor their anti-Choice policies, because those are the two emotional wedge-issues that they need in order to convince their base to vote against their own socioeconomic best interests, every blood year, every bloody election.

    if the GOP is no longer anti-gay, or anti-Choice, then they'll be forced to...you know...talk frankly and honestly about their economic policies.

    and anyone who has a functioning brain knows the GOP can't tell their base exactly what their economic policies are, and what their impact will be.

    "SO, uh, vote for us! Your healthcare costs won't go down, and you'll probably pay a higher tax rate than wealthy people. but we promise to stop those lesbians from getting married in your church while also giving your daughters abortions!"


    how come we never see GOProud members and their families talking about the beauty of loving and celebraing LGBT Diversity?

    where are GOProud Parents? Where is the "we love our gay kids" republican angle?

    GOProud will be a great resource for insecure white boys with no testicles. Like a coffee-klatch, only they drink poison, while waiting for it to poison Liberals.

    :D

    Posted by: LittleKiwi | Jan 18, 2013 3:18:53 PM


  23. "It is so obvious from these comments how terrified Democrats and the Far Left are by the possibility that the Republican Party will at some point drop its homophobic stances......" RICK: thanks for the biggest laugh of the day! It's obvious you must be a GOProud member. Republicans have a better chance of cozying up to Obama before they ever entertain the thought of inviting us homo's into their tent. Funny Rick, freakin funny!

    Posted by: BETTY | Jan 18, 2013 6:35:58 PM


  24. Actually, there is a better chance the Republicans will hold their national convention in my a*s before they embrace the gay.

    Posted by: BETTY | Jan 18, 2013 6:37:30 PM


  25. If anyone is "terrified," it's the Republican party and the idiots of GOProud: they are being forced to come to terms with the fact that their anti-gay, anti-women, anti-middle-class, anti-immigrant policies have no future. And they will have to change or become obsolete. As for attracting sane gay men to their side, they have a long long way to go before any self-respecting gay person would vote for a party whose mainstream is no better on gay rights now than it was decades ago. And inequality happens to be very expensive for gay people, a little tidbit the GOProud boys are too delusional to grasp.

    Posted by: Ernie | Jan 18, 2013 7:33:09 PM


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