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CLEVELAND (ChurchMilitant.com) - After an emotionally tense meeting of delegates Monday, the GOP platform is so far refusing to reverse course on the issue of gay "marriage" and transgender rights.
In spite of a tearful plea from lesbian delegate Rachel Huff from Washington, D.C., who said, "If our party wants a future ... we must evolve," the discussion so far signals a choice to maintain the party platform opposing same-sex "marriage."
Governor Mary Fallin of Oklahoma afterwards defended the decision, explaining that this opposition has "been the longtime tradition of the Republican Party."
"She's still welcome in the party," she added. "Everyone is."
Republican delegates have begun revising their 62-page policy prescriptions, to be finalized as the official GOP party platform at the national convention this week, when they will welcome presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump. Trump has been hesitant to fully embrace socially conservative positions on abortion, gay unions and transgender rights, once telling Bruce Jenner (now known as Caitlyn) that he can use any bathroom in Trump Tower he likes.
The party platform, however, is retaining language opposing the Obama administration's transgender bathroom mandate that all public schools allow boys to use girls' bathrooms and vice versa if they believe they are the opposite sex. Twenty-three states are currently suing Obama over the mandate.
"Their edict to the states concerning restrooms, locker rooms and other facilities is at once illegal, dangerous and ignores privacy issues," the platform reads. "We salute the several states which have filed suit against it."
The platform is also reinforcing studies showing same-sex parenting harms children. "Children raised in a traditional two-parent household tend to be physically and emotionally healthier, less likely to use drugs and alcohol, engage in crime or become pregnant outside of marriage," it reads.
New York delegate Annie Dickerson expressed outrage over the language, calling it "another poke in the eye to the gay community."
"Stop repelling gays, for God's sake!" she insisted.
The National Republican Convention is taking place in Cleveland, Ohio July 18–21.
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