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Former McCain Strategist: GOP Needs To “Re-examine” Position On Gay Marriage



Steve Schmidt, one of the top advisors to John McCain’s 2008 Presidential campaign, is urging Republicans to reconsider their traditionally anti gay-marriage views.  FOX reports:

Steve Schmidt, in his first political appearance since the election, spoke at the Washington, D.C., convention for the Log Cabin Republicans — a grassroots group for gay and lesbian Republicans.

He urged Republicans, in the near-term, to endorse civil unions and stop using the Bible as rationale for gay-marriage opposition.

“If you put public policy issues to a religious test, you risk becoming a religious party,” he said. “And in a free country a political party cannot be viable in the long-term if it is seen as a sectarian party.”

Schmidt, whose sister is a lesbian and who supports same-sex marriage, said he understands the Republican Party probably won’t reverse its resistance to same-sex marriage anytime soon.

But he suggested that the party will be increasingly marginalized if it sustains that opposition long-term.

“If the party is seen as anti-gay, then that is injurious to its candidates” in Democrat-leaning and competitive states, he said.

Schmidt highlighted the major challenge facing the GOP– namely, how to win new voters without alienating their base.  Gay marriage is a particularly tough issue, given that many conservatives feel strongly that it should remain illegal.  There are some critically important decisions to be made by the Republican party right now… stay tuned.

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