Oklahoma GOP Chairman John Bennett on Tuesday demanded Ronna McDaniel resign as the chair of the Republican National Committee for attempting to reach out to LGBTQ voters, The Daily Beast reports.
McDaniel earlier this year announced the creation of the RNC Pride Coalition during a dinner held by the Log Cabin Republicans, a group of LGBTQ party members.
The event was hosted by Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort and attended by Trump and former first lady Melania Trump and former Trump adviser Ric Grenell, the first openly gay Cabinet official.
“Conservatives in Log Cabin don’t just share our vision for a free, secure and prosperous America. They enrich it by adding unique perspectives to our party and recruiting even more diverse candidates and supporters to join our cause,” McDaniel said at the event.
"The RNC is launching our first-ever RNC Pride Coalition," she said, which will "work alongside our other coalition groups to invest in communities and mobilize support for the upcoming midterms."
GOPers not OK:
Bennett in an 1100-word fundraising screed demanded McDaniel resign over the plan.
“The OKGOP will not cooperate with this decision and, as your Chairman, I assure the Oklahoma Republican Party that I will continue to stand up for our Republican Party Values and our principles,” Bennett wrote, arguing that religious freedom is “flat-out incompatible with the pillars of the LGBT movement.”
“Let’s clear the way of those who are either too incompetent or too selfish to actually defend liberty and our Judeo-Christian founding,” he said.
RNC hits back:
The RNC issued a statement on Wednesday accusing Bennett of “lying.”
“Chairman McDaniel has made it abundantly clear that this does not mean we are advocating for any policy or RNC platform change — Chairman Bennett is lying and it is disgusting that he’d attempt to raise money off these falsehoods,” RNC spokeswoman Danielle Alvarez said.
The RNC shared an email McDaniel sent to members after the announcement expressly denying that the party would change its position on LGBTQ rights.
“Outreach to the gay community is part of the comprehensive outreach program we have on the strategic initiatives team at the RNC, including for Evangelical, Catholic, Jewish, Hispanic, Veterans, Youth, Black, and Asian-Pacific Americans,” McDaniel said in the email. “The goal of these outreach efforts is to engage with voters from all backgrounds to bring new voters into our party. The RNC hiring this new staffer does not mean we are advocating for ANY policy or RNC platform change on these issues.”