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MA-GOP Senate Frontrunner, Like The Party Itself, Has A Bias Problem

Mike Sullivan

Five candidates — two Democrats and three Republicans — are vying for the U.S. Senate seat in Massachusetts vacated by John Kerry.  All of these candidates support marriage equality except Mike Sullivan, a Republican, who thinks that gays should be barred from civil marriage.  Boston Globe reports:

Speaking to reporters in the morning and to a conservative radio host in the afternoon, Sullivan, a former US attorney, insisted he would not back away from his opposition to same-sex marriage, calling himself “a traditionalist when it comes to the definition of marriage.”

Mr. Sullivan is currently polling the strongest among the Republican candidates.  If he wins the April 30 primary, the Massachusetts Republican Party is going to have an image problem on its hands.

The platform of the Massachusetts Republican Party is silent on marriage but implicitly condones discrimination against state residents on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, categories that are painfully absent from the platform‘s anti-discrimination statement:

We consider discrimination based on sex, race, age, religion, creed, disability, veteran status, or national origin to be immoral, and we reject hatred, racism, anti-Semitism, ethnic prejudice, and religious intolerance.

The Massachusetts Republican Party tries to appear moderate and has moderate members, yet is clearly still willing to condone discrimination against LGBT people even when state law does not.  What will it do, should the marriage dinosaur win the primary?

Recent history indicates that it is quite willing to forget its moderate facade, ignore its moderate members and get squarely behind whichever Republican clears the primary gate.

For example, last year the Massachusetts Republican Party platform committee “voted overwhelmingly to endorse Mitt Romney’s presidential platform as an addition to the current state party platform, rather than embrace the national plan” due to “the national party platform’s strict language on abortion,” Boston Globe reported.

This happened despite Mr. Romney having “signed a pledge from NOM committing himself to back a Federal Marriage Amendment, defend the Defense of Marriage Act in court and establish a commission on “religious liberty” to investigate the alleged harassment of same-sex marriage supporters,” Washington Blade reported.

Considering that 62% of Massachusetts voters, national conservative leaders and next generation Republicans are part of the ever-growing American majority that supports marriage equality, it will be increasingly more difficult for the Massachusetts Republican Party to hide its retrograde reality behind a moderate facade.

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Laurel Ramseyer

Laurel Ramseyer