Casey Pick, the program director for Log Cabin Republicans, writes on BlogHer about the reasoning behind Log Cabin Republicans qualified endorsed of Mitt Romney. The defense is peppered with ‘he’s not so bad’ and ‘we can work with him’ statements which would have been a fine attitude back in the days when the Democrat’s view toward the gay community was ‘just be glad we’re not raiding your bars anymore’, but times have changed. While it is important to work across the aisle to get support for the cause, Romney is not the man to work with. Within Ms. Pick’s op-ed she, unintentionally, gives the reasons why:
Mitt Romney is the candidate who has campaigned on his record as a successful businessman and problem-solver, and whose aversion to running on social issues leaves antigay leaders like Maggie Gallagher frothing with frustration: “gay marriage should be helping put Romney in the White House. Instead, in his consultant-tested messaging, Romney is conveying discomfort with his own position,” she recently wrote.
Romney’s message is “consultant-tested” vs. being an actual core. It’s messaging that is tailored to whichever group he is speaking. We’ve heard him say that he doesn’t have to worry about the 47% of Americans who won’t take responsibility, then say that he cares about all Americans. We’ve heard him say he’ll repeal Obamacare, then say he’ll keep some parts of it, only to have him, again, say he’ll repeal it. We’ve seen it just this week with Superstorm Sandy. Romney was going to get rid of FEMA, but in the midst of a natural disaster, he won’t confirm or deny that position no matter how many times he was asked.
Ms. Pick, in her defense of Romney himself, writes the below; in order to paint him as a kinder, gentler anti-gay candidate.
Contrary to the irresponsible claims of certain activists, Governor Romney has no intention of reinstating “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” or stopping same-sex partners from being able to visit their loved ones in the hospital. Far from a fire-breathing ideologue, Governor Romney is somebody we can work with to improve the lives of LGBT Americans, including on the vital issue of workplace discrimination. And beyond specifically LGBT concerns, Governor Romney has a plan to restart our economy and put America back to work -– something that will benefit us all.
You’ll notice that gay marriage equality was missing from the list of “irresponsible claims.” Nowhere else in the article does Ms. Pick touch on the subject of gay marriage equality because we already know what Romney’s on that. We knew it when he signed the National organization for Marriages’ anti-equality pledge, which contains, among its bullet points, proposing a federal constitutional amendment banning gay marriage; defending the Defense of Marriage Act in court; and proposing legislation so that the District of Columbia will have the opportunity to vote on gay citizens civil rights. No claim to be made there because it is in print for all, including gay conservatives, to see.
But the real problem with the defense of the Log Cabin Republican endorsement comes from the below paragraph:
We know this to be true because Log Cabin Republicans know Mitt Romney. We’ve spoken to the man, and worked with his campaign to make this endorsement something more than just a press release, something based on the promise of actual, tangible results if the governor is elected. In response to our endorsement, a campaign spokesperson said, “Gov. Romney is pleased to have the support of the Log Cabin Republicans and looks forward to working together for the future of our country.” That is hardly the reaction of an avowed homophobe.
Maybe not a homophobe, but an opportunist. As I had seen in a comments post recently, Romney is basically lying his way to the White House. He’s selling snake oil solutions before packing up and moving onto the next gullible group to sell something else. The problem isn’t just being able to work with Romney, but being able to trust him. He has had too many instances where he changes message–alters his core–just to appease whichever group is going to get him the most votes (or give him an endorsement). But if you are taking running for President seriously, you shouldn’t be treating it like a homecoming popularity contest. Because, unlike a football game, there is an actual job to do once you’ve won. It’s a job that affects the lives of millions of Americans, and we still don’t have a clear idea of what Romney will do in that job…because he won’t tell us, or he’ll tell us one thing and then turn around and tell us something else.
Ms. Pick and other gay conservatives and homocons may want to tie up their endorsements in some type of pretty talking-point packaging about the economy, but the reality is, as I’ve said before, gay marriage equality is about the economy. If you’re forcibly divorced due to a federal constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, that’s going to affect your economy. Even if you end workplace discrimination, it’s still going to affect your economy if you can’t be added to your partners health insurance because you’re not legal married and therefore your spouse, and possibly the kids, aren’t considered ‘family.’ Plus, it’s not the White House that is the problem with passing the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), it’s Congress. We’ve had a President that we can “work with” over the past four years and we still have no ENDA, so how would a Romney Presidency change that dynamic? Not to mention that all you have is a “promise.” That’s not a guarantee, that’s a gamble. Because as Romney has demonstrated many times before, it’s not that we can’t “Believe in America”, it’s that we can’t believe the candidate who’s running for President under that slogan.