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Republican grassroots in no mood for shift on gay marriage | Hunter of Justice

Republican grassroots in no mood for shift on gay marriage

by on April 27, 2009  •  In Marriage

Like National Journal's poll of beltway insiders, this Politico article predicts a do-or-die stand by hardcore conservatives in the Republican Party on gay rights and other hot button issues:

…Outside Washington, the reality is very different. Rank-and-file Republicans remain, by all indications, staunchly conservative, and they appear to have no desire to moderate their views. GOP activists and operatives say they hear intense anger at the White House and at the party’s own leaders on familiar issues – taxes, homosexuality, and immigration. Within the party, conservative groups have grown stronger absent the emergence of any organized moderate faction.

There is little appetite for compromise on what many see as core issues, and the road to the presidential nomination lies – as always – through a series of states where the conservative base holds sway, and where the anger appears to be, if anything, particularly intense. "There is a sense of rebellion brewing," said Katon Dawson, the outgoing South Carolina Republican Party chairman, who cited unexpectedly high attendance at anti-tax “tea parties” last week.

Rep. Steve King, an outspoken conservative who represents all of rock-ribbed western Iowa and may run for governor next year, said he had held 11 town hall meetings across the state since the early April state Supreme Court decision. "Of those 11 meetings, 10 of them were full. Most of them were standing room. The marriage issue was the No. 1 issue on their minds. No. 2 was the massive federal spending taking place. In every discussion, immigration came up."

"I’ve never seen the grass-roots quite as motivated, concerned and angry," said Steve Scheffler, the head of the Iowa Christian Alliance and the state's RNC committeeman.

UPDATE: The NY Times has more on the desire of moderates to move the GOP to de-emphasizing the issue.

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