The headline-making news from the Feb. 2-4 meeting was RNC members voting to censure GOP lawmakers Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger, but Rob Chambers of American Family Action says he was watching to see if the GOP leaders would ignore the culture war-fighting voices that often support the Republican Party.
AFA Action is an affiliate of the American Family Association, the Mississippi-based ministry that has been fighting the “culture wars” since the 1970s. Back then, the Reagan-led Republican Party aligned itself with the so-called “Religious Right” and embraced its belief in Bible-based morality and the traditional nuclear family, which were both under attack.
Last year, in a sign how times have changed, RNC chair Ronna McDaniel recognized “Pride Month” with a June 2 social media post on Twitter. McDaniel said the GOP has doubled its “LGBTQ support” over four years and she predicted the party would continue to “grow our big tent by supporting measures that promote fairness and balance protections for LGBTQ Americans and those with deeply held religious beliefs.”
McDaniel’s parting reference to “religious beliefs” appeared to recognize the GOP was dealing with two differing views among its voters. Chambers tells AFN, however, that McDaniel later announced a first-ever “RNC Pride Coalition” that involved the influential Log Cabin Republicans.
"Log Cabin Republicans is the group,” Chambers advises, “that promotes same-sex marriage [and] LGBT rights, even as they would conflict with the rights of people of faith.”
After the RNC "pride" push, AFA and other groups urged the public to contact RNC members, and elected Republicans, to remind them there are many with "deeply held religious beliefs" who vote.
Last week's resolution was impacted by that outcry, Chambers says. So with that conflict simmering for months, the RNC Committee passed last week's resolution to “reaffirm” the political party’s commitment to faith-based voters.
One of the “whereas” statements admits the LGBT outreach “created the impression among important elements of our coalition, particularly among Conservative/Religious voters and the religious leaders representing them, that the RNC was undermining essential aspects of our platform, including our planks on marriage and religious liberty.”
"This is all about making sure that the conservative base,” Chambers says, referring to the resolution, “is going to show up to vote in what I would hope would be the most conservative candidate that would reflect the biblical values that we hold."
Editor's Note: The American Family Association is the parent organization of the American Family News Network, which operates AFN.net.