A prominent gay-rights organization is endorsing GOP lawmakers from Florida, Illinois, Pennsylvania and other states for their against-the-grain commitment to LBGT causes.
Log Cabin Republicans on Friday endorsed South Florida Reps. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Carlos Curbelo in their re-election races, along with five other incumbent lawmakers from across the country.
The advocacy group, which believes that equality for LBGT people is in the best traditions of Republican Party, said the seven newly endorsed representatives “have been steadfast allies of LBGT freedom” in the House of Representatives.
“All of these common-sense conservatives have not only spoken out in support of equality, but also cast votes in the 114th Congress that confirm their commitment to the cause,” Gregory T. Angelo, head of Log Cabin Republicans, said.
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The other lawmakers endorsed were Rep. Robert Dold of Illinois, Rep. Charlie Dent of Pennsylvania, Rep. John Katko of New York, Rep. Frank LoBiondo of New Jersey and Rep. Mike Coffman of Colorado.
Angelo said the endorsements were based in part on two key issues.
The seven representatives, Angelo said, steadfastly opposed any congressional attempt to overturn the Supreme Court’s landmark June 2015 marriage-equality ruling.
And in May, all seven voted to uphold an executive order by President Barack Obama banning federal contractors from discriminating against LBGT employees.
I will continue to promote inclusiveness and ensure the fair and equal treatment of all individuals, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender.
Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Florida Republican
The seven endorsed lawmakers were among 43 Republicans who voted with all 180 Democrats to uphold the executive order, an outcome that reversed the House’s earlier positions on the issue.
“These were the two benchmarks for this election cycle,” Angelo told McClatchy. “Voting for such protections is a step in the right direction. It shows that these Republicans back up their words with actions.”
Formed in 1985, Log Cabin Republicans claims to be the largest GOP advocacy group dedicated to promoting gay rights.
Ros-Lehtinen, running for her 15th term against Miami small business owner Scott Furhman, expressed gratitude for the endorsement.
“I will continue to promote inclusiveness and ensure the fair and equal treatment of all individuals, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender,” she said.
Curbelo is running for his second House term against Joe Garcia, the former congressman he defeated two years ago.
“In Congress, I have been proud to stand up for equality,” Curbelo said. “I am honored to have the support of Republicans who understand that equality can never be a partisan issue.”