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The Virulently Anti-gay, GOP-packed Values Voter Summit Has Begun: WATCH

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Family Research Council's annual Values Voter Summit kicks off in Washington D.C. today and, as always, features a who's who of anti-gay activists, politicians, and media personalities devoting their time and effort towards denying LGBT individuals equal rights.

Confirmed speakers for the 3-day extravaganza include Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN), Gary Bauer, Glenn Beck, Jason & David Benahm, Gen. William Boykin, Rep. Jim Bridenstien (R-OK), Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst (R-TX), TLC's Jim Bob & Michelle Duggar, Erick Erickson, Rep. John Fleming (R-LA), Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-MO), Mike Huckabee, Bishop E.W. Jackson, Gov. Bobby Jindal (R-LA), Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC), Sarah Palin, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), Tony Perkins, Sandy Rios, Rick Santorum, Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ), Todd Starnes, Mat Staver, Rep. Marlin Stutzman (R-IN), Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA), and many more. 

SummitThe hate summit is being live-streamed online. You can catch the video feed, AFTER THE JUMP...

And if you missed our exclusive report by People for the American Way's Drew Courtney about the Republican Party's cozy relationship with the hate group-backed summit, check that out HERE. The report details  how the GOP, despite signaling it would "rebrand" after the 2012 election, continues to align itself with extremist fringe groups that "actively seek to put LGBT people back in the closet, quash access to legal abortion, and restrict the free exercise rights of non-Christian religious minorities."

Continue reading "The Virulently Anti-gay, GOP-packed Values Voter Summit Has Begun: WATCH" »


Some Things Never Change: The Values Voter Summit and the Dubious 'Rebranding' of the GOP

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BY DREW COURTNEY

Following the failure of the GOP to recapture the White House in the last presidential election, rebranding was a word that got knocked around a lot within party circles and in the media. In order to shore up the hemorrhaging support of women, ethnic and racial minorities, and young voters, it was agreed that the GOP platform would have to embrace less alienating positions on a variety of policy issues.

Now on the eve of midterm elections almost two years later, it’s become clear that Republican officials aren’t sticking to the plan. This weekend, conservative lawmakers including Sen. Ted Cruz, Sen. Rand Paul, and Gov. Bobby Jindal are slated to participate in what has become a rite of passage for presidential hopefuls of the GOP: courting the support of the Religious Right at the Family Research Council’s (FRC) annual Values Voter Summit.

VvsLurching in the opposite direction from the rest of the country, Republican officials are aligning themselves with extremist fringe groups that actively seek to put LGBT people back in the closet, quash access to legal abortion, and restrict the free exercise rights of non-Christian religious minorities. The FRC — as well as other primary sponsors of the event including the American Family Association, Liberty Counsel and American Values — has been instrumental in encouraging the GOP’s continued rightward march and carries a great deal of influence over evangelical Tea Party voters who form the core of the far right, a group that presidential contenders in the party increasingly feel the need to cater to.

A look at a few of the speakers scheduled to share the stage with leading Republican figures shows how grievously out of step the party is with the values of the American people AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Some Things Never Change: The Values Voter Summit and the Dubious 'Rebranding' of the GOP" »


Oklahoma Tea Party Candidate Thinks Gays Should Be Stoned to Death: VIDEO

EskA tea-party candidate for the Oklahoma State House District 91 is in the news today for controversial statements made on social media in support of Old Testament-style punishment for homosexuality.

Scott Esk, who prides himself on being “100% Traditional Family Values,” started throwing out Bible verses on Facebook last July after a friend posted a link to an article about Pope Francis saying “Who am I to judge gay people?”

Esk quotes Leviticus 20:13, the “if a man who lies with a man they shall be put to death” verse, adding that “If men wink at such perversions, God may have no choice than to judge such nations with calamities.”

When asked by the friend to clarify if he really thought gays should be put to death by stoning, Esk responds:

“I think we would be totally in the right to do it. That goes against some parts of libertarianism, I realize, and I’m largely libertarian, but ignoring things that are worthy of death is very remiss.”

And in a follow-up interview with The Moore Daily yesterday, Esk made it clear his views haven’t changed. You can listen to that interview, HERE.

(via Firebrand Progressives)


Cantor Concedes, Brat Praises God in Victory Speech: VIDEOS

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House Majority Leader Eric Cantor conceded the shocking loss of his Virginia House seat to Tea Party candidate Dave Brat. Meanwhile, Brat thanked his supporters:

"In the bad times I know where I went when things went bad. I went to God and I went to my family and this little note was hanging on my door every day and I read this every day. Luke 18:27. Jesus replied, 'What is impossible with man is possible with God.'"

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

The larger implications of this contest include the end of immigration reform and more pressure on Obama to exert an Executive Order on that issue, a fractured Republican party, and the newly wide open race for House Speaker.

Brat

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Tea Party Group Renews Push for Kansas Bill Legalizing Gay Discrimination

A Wichita-based tea party group is attempting to revive a Kansas bill that would allow religious-based discrimination against gays, with the group saying the bill is as much a protection of LGBT rights as it is a protection of the rights of Christians.The bill is currently blocked in the Kansas Senate after a group of Republican lawmakers, including Senate President Susan Wagle, joined the Democrat opposition last week. The Lawrence Journal-World reports:

Craig gabelCraig Gabel [pictured], leader of Kansans for Liberty, sent a message addressed to "conservative activists" asking them to contact senators who are refusing to allow a vote on a house bill dubbed the Kansas Religious Freedom Act, The Wichita Eagle reported. […]

“This is not a Christian battle this is a freedom battle, including the freedom of LGBT couples, the sample letter said. "If an LGBT couple owned a meeting space would any of us like to force them to rent it for an anti-gay rally and wedding? Should an African American and his LGBT partner be forced to lease his space or services for a KKK wedding?"

Thomas Witt, executive director of Equality Kansas, blasted the notion that the bill contains anything but pure animus directed at the LGBT community.

"The sophistry is breathtaking," he said. "There's only one target in this bill and it is gay couples."

The only people who would benefit from the legislation are anti-gay individuals who would gain legal protection if they defy their employers and refuse to serve gay couples, he said.


Florida Tea Party Leader Says Gays Have Taken Over Local GOP

Danita Kilcullen

Co-founder of Tea Party Fort Lauderdale and Danita Kilcullen is absolutely losing it that the Log Cabin Republicans in Broward are actually having influence within the Republican party. In response to an email from Andy Eddy of the local Log Cabin Republicans, Kilcullen ranted:

We must fight with all we have... We must put  pressure on the House like has never been seen before.  I'll be damned if I will ever be forced to hire someone with orange hair, body/neck/face covered with tattoos, multiple piercings, or a man in a dress... or for that matter, a demonstrative effeminate male or purposeful butch-looking female.  The Log Cabins are the same lobbyist organization that has all but taken over BREC; and besides that, we have someone on the Board of BREC who is using her position to openly put pressure on some BREC members to stand for same-sex marriage.

Kilcullen, someone who isn't in the position to be denigrating the physical appearance of others, is a convicted criminal who was arrested in October 2010 for felony battery of a police officer but plead guilty to trespassing and a lesser charge of misdemeanor resisting arrest. 


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