Illinois Republican chairman resigns in the face of opposition from party homophobes
The story is HERE:
Pat Brady [above], the chairman of the Illinois Republican Party, announced his resignation Tuesday amid a simmering controversy over his support for gay marriage legislation.
Brady had been expected to drop out of the lead GOP role following a tumultuous period that pitted the Republicans’ social moderates against their social conservatives.
With same-sex marriage legislation pending in the Illinois legislature, Brady this year voiced his support for the proposal despite a plank in the state GOP platform that said marriage should be reserved for a man and a woman. Brady said he made the endorsement personally, not as Republican chairman, but conservatives in the top echelon of the GOP party quickly complained.
Though Brady survived immediate attempts to dump him, a meeting of the Republican State Central Committee in Tinley Park last month made clear his fate. GOP leaders agreed to put together a succession plan, allowing Brady, of St. Charles, an exit strategy that made clear his days were numbered as they began a search for a new chairman.
We’ve reached a curious moment in the culture war, haven’t we? If a leading Republican official believes two consenting adults who fall in love and want to get married should be able to do so, he apparently can’t be a state GOP chairman — even if his job performance is otherwise fine, and even in a “blue” state where Republicans have to be more moderate to compete.
In March, Republican National Chairman Reince Priebus said his party’s opposition to equal marriage rights hasn’t changed, but he wants to “welcome” those who disagree. The party will adhere to its platform, Priebus added, “but it doesn’t mean that we divide and subtract people from our party…. I don’t believe we need to act like Old Testament heretics.”
I think it’s fair to say the developments in Illinois represent yet another setback for the Republican Party’s rebranding campaign.