Republican Party of Texas Removes Condemnations of Homosexuality

June 16, 2018 – San Antonio – Statement from LCR Houston Chapter

The Republican Party of the State of Texas reforms “Homosexual Behavior” plank, eliminating condemnation of people for just being gay.

The Republican Party of Texas has just passed a new revised plank on Homosexual Behavior (#84 in 2016, #316 in 2018) that, while maintaining opposition to same-sex marriage, no longer condemns people simply for being gay, or opines on whether homosexuality is chosen behavior.

June 21, 2018 – Houston – Statement from LCR Houston President/LCR Texas Secretary

Message from Chapter President on Platform Change

As you may have already heard, last week at the state convention of the Republican Party of Texas, we secured a substantive change in the party’s official platform position regarding homosexuality and homosexual behavior. The platform of the Republican Party of Texas no longer condemns people simply for being gay (more on that below).

A few weeks ago the first member of Log Cabin Republicans was successfully appointed to serve on the Platform Committee, and then to the subcommittee of State Affairs, of the Republican Party of Texas, which meets only at the biannual state convention (the subcommittee of State Affairs had oversight to the Homosexual Behavior plank). With those appointments, and the groundwork laid over two years, first by the Log Cabin Republicans of Houston, and later by all the chapters of the Log Cabin Republicans of Texas, and with the support of our allies under the new Freedom First Republicans Coalition, we succeeded in overcoming the intense opposition to the changes, and achieved our strategic goal. This was done through orderly public expressions of support for our cause, and discreet negotiations with key parties.

The Dallas Morning News has a story that gives you a high level idea of how we did it (not 100% exact, but pretty good):

Dallas Morning News Story on How We Did It

To be clear, it was never our goal to eliminate the plank entirely, as that was not considered a viable outcome, and the intense and heated deliberations and negotiations at the Platform Committee, and behind the scenes, only validated that assessment.

The changes from the 2016 platform, which the Platform Committee was required to start with, to the new 2018 platform are:

1. Homosexuality is chosen behavior – Gone.
2. Homosexuality is contrary to the truths of God – Gone.
3. Homosexuality should not presented as an acceptable lifestyle – Gone.
4. Family should not be redefined to include homosexual couples – Gone.
5. God’s biblical design for marriage is one man, one woman, oppose homosexual marriage – New, BUT it was and is already in the platform elsewhere, so it really makes no difference here.
6. No special status for homosexual behavior – Stays, but while annoying, not a real policy issue, we are not asking for this anyway.
7. Oppose criminal or civil penalties against those who oppose homosexuality – Stays, but while annoying, not a real policy issue, we are not asking to punish free speech either.

Your support made this substantive, real change possible. And, we accomplished this with a budget that is microscopic when compared, not only to the organized opposition within the party, but also when compared to other gay and trans rights groups in Texas. Imagine what we could do with added financial support.

I was proud to serve as the first LCR and openly gay member of the Platform Committee of the Republican Party of Texas, and I got to see the full spectrum of both, opposition and support, for what we were trying to do. And, after everything seemed nearly lost on Wednesday night, with no public support in sight that day, I cannot tell you how wonderful it was to see on Thursday, Republicans from across the state, Log Cabin members, Republican Liberty Caucus allies, Young Republicans, show up in force, like a late-arriving cavalry, to dispel the idea that ‘no Republicans’ wanted a change here. That alone did not do the trick, but without that display of support, it is likely we would not have prevailed in the end. If you see a YR or RLC member – thank them.

To be sure, there is more work to be done. But, don’t let the naysayers and armchair quarterbacks tell you otherwise: this Saturday in Houston, we do have something to celebrate. And, you are part of the reason why.

Marco A. Roberts,

President of Log Cabin Republicans of Houston