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Log Cabin Republicans endorse Mitt Romney, face immediate criticism

WASHINGTON – The morning after the final presidential debate, the Log Cabin Republicans (LCR) joined GOProud in endorsing Mitt Romney for President.

The endorsement instantly drew fire from LGBT groups. The Mitt Gets Worse campaign immediately began promoting a YouTube video featuring openly gay Rep. Barney Frank explaining why he cannot understand how groups like LCR could endorse a candidate and a political party that is so clearly anti-gay.

R. Clarke Cooper, executive director of Log Cabin Republicans, said the gay group made its endorsement after “careful consideration and consultation with our members and chapters, as well as communication with Mitt Romney and his campaign team.”

“The decision to endorse is the right one for our members, our community, and for the nation as a whole,” Cooper said. “Despite our disagreement with Governor Romney on the issue of marriage, on balance it is clear that in today’s economic climate, concern for the future of our country must be the highest priority.

“We are Republicans, and we agree with Governor Romney’s vision for America in which success is a virtue, equal opportunity is ensured, and leaders recognize that it is the American people, not government, that build our nation and fuel its prosperity,” he said.

“On issues of particular concern to the LGBT community, we believe Governor Romney will move the ball forward compared to past Republican presidents. No matter who is in the White House, it is crucial our community always has a credible voice speaking out on behalf of LGBT Americans. Log Cabin Republicans will be that voice to President Mitt Romney,” Cooper said.

To read the full endorsement statement, click HERE.

LGBT Democrats react angrily

Stonewall Democrats, another gay group, blasted the Log Cabin Republicans in a fundraising letter sent out within minutes of today’s LCR endorsement.

“With their endorsement of Mitt Romney today, the Log Cabin Republicans have proven once and for all that they are not an organization aligned with the LGBT movement. They are a Republican front group bumbling their way into fooling LGBT voters that it's OK to support a party that would legislate us back into the closet,” the letter said.

“Their endorsement of Mitt Romney isn't just shameful - it's insulting. Mitt Romney stands for nothing positive for LGBT people. He supports a federal marriage amendment (which was a reason for Log Cabin to refuse to endorse George W. Bush in 2004). He supports McCarthy-like investigations into our community for evidence of 'harassment of Christians'. He opposes the repeal of DOMA. He opposes ENDA. He's even said things as basic as the right to visit your sick or dying loved one in the hospital is a 'privilege' and not a right,” the letter said.

“On top of all of that, Mitt Romney is a liar. He has told so many untruths and changed his positions so many times throughout this campaign, how can Log Cabin - or anyone - trust a word he would say? A person with no moral compass goes whichever way the political winds blow. With Mitt Romney in charge of the ship of state, we would be a rudderless nation with nothing but luck to keep us from crashing into the rocky shore - and Log Cabin Republicans believes this is the best their party and our country can muster,” the letter continued.

“It's a disgrace. A once venerated and decent organization has become a shell of itself blithely pandering to the least common denominator. This is politics at its worst - when a community sells out its own people for the gain of a few individuals. There is little doubt that Clarke Coooper's position on the RNC finance committee played a major role in this decision. Of course, so did their blinding fear of GOProud nipping at their heels,” the letter said, pointing out the rivalry between the two gay Republican groups.

“So there you have it - the Log Cabin Republicans, who screamed loudly and forcefully for months that liberal groups and LGBT movement posturing weren't going to affect their endorsements have instead allowed the interests of money sucking GOP insiders and the fear of a conservative performance troupe to decide their endorsement for them,” the letter said.

The Mitt Gets Worse group also criticized the LCR endorsement of Romney/Ryan.

“Today's endorsement shows that Log Cabin Republicans are a right-wing conservative organization that happens to have gay staff, rather than an organization dedicated to LGBT equality that supports conservative principles,” Mitt Gets Worse said.

“When one reviews the horribly anti-equality record of Gov. Romney, it pales in comparison to the record of President George W. Bush, whom the Log Cabin Republicans wisely declined to endorse for re-election. Clearly the Log Cabin Republicans were put back in their place by the Republican establishment after that episode, or they never would have seen fit to endorse a candidate who opposes nearly every single item on the agenda for full LGBT equality over a President who is arguably the most pro-equality President in our history. Mitt Gets Worse will not hesitate to point this out over the last two weeks of the campaign.”


People For the American Way responds

Michael Keegan, president of People For the American Way, said Log Cabin Republicans are kidding themselves about a Romney Supreme Court. Here is his statement:

I’m not surprised that the Log Cabin Republicans have gone against the best interests of LGBT Americans in endorsing Mitt Romney. Responding to their rationalization would normally not be worth the time, but one of their attempts at self-justification deserves a response. Log Cabin claims, ‘Those who point fearfully to potential vacancies on the United States Supreme Court, we offer a reminder: five of the eight federal court rulings against DOMA were written by Republican-appointed judges. Mitt Romney is not Rick Santorum, and Paul Ryan is not Michele Bachmann.’

The Log Cabin Republicans have willfully ignored everything Mitt Romney has said about the Supreme Court.

Romney has said that he will appoint Supreme Court justices and lower court judges in the mold of Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas, who are both adamantly opposed to protecting the rights of gay people under the Constitution. Both dissented in Lawrence v. Texas, the ruling that ended criminal sodomy laws. In his dissent, Scalia accused the Court’s majority of signing on to the ‘homosexual agenda.’ These are the kind of Justices that Mitt Romney has promised to nominate to the Supreme Court.

We can also look to Romney’s choice of Robert Bork to lead his judicial advisory committee, a clear signal that he’s ready to cede judicial nominations to the Religious Right. Bork has vehemently disagreed with every pro-gay rights decision the Supreme Court has ever made, and even claims that marriage equality will lead to ‘man-boy associations’ and ‘polygamy.’ This is who Romney has picked to advise him on judicial nominations.

Romney doesn’t just support amending the Constitution to prohibit marriage equality – an amendment that every justice would be obliged to enforce. Everything Romney has said about judicial nominations indicates that he will appoint Supreme Court justices and lower court judges who will do lasting damage to the rights of all Americans – including LGBT people. No LGBT American or anyone who believes in equality should be fooled into thinking otherwise.