April 16th, 2009
05:49 PM ET
3 years ago

McCains lend a hand to gay Republican group

Meghan McCain is a vocal supporter of same-sex marriage.
Meghan McCain is a vocal supporter of same-sex marriage.

(CNN) – Log Cabin Republicans are getting some support from the McCain family.

Cindy and Meghan McCain will make an appearance at the gay rights organization's four day convention in Washington, which kicks off Thursday night.

"Of all the causes I believe in and speak publicly about, this is one of the ones closest to my heart," Meghan McCain, a vocal supporter of same-sex marriage, wrote in the Daily Beast this week. "If the Republican Party has any hope of gaining substantial support from a wider, younger base, we need to get past our anti-gay rhetoric."

Steve Schmidt, former senior strategist for John McCain's 2008 presidential campaign and manager of Arnold Schwarzenegger's gubernatorial reelection campaign in 2006, will also be in attendance. Schmidt will be speaking about the 2008 election and the GOP's comeback agenda.

In an interview Thursday with CNN, LCR Spokesperson Charles Moran said the organization is lobbying New York Republicans to help pass the same-sex marriage law championed by the state's Democratic Gov. David Paterson.

"We have people on the ground, we're identifying our bases of support, looking at our polling, looking at our research, so that we can be ready to assist the marriage coalition in New York with targeting those crucial GOP votes," Moran told CNN.

The group is also working on identifying the Republican players who will serve as the face of their organization's mission.

Moran citied Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, a Mormon Republican who has called for the adoption of civil unions, and Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele, who acknowledged that gay Republicans have a place at the party's table.

"These are the types of leaders and luminaries within the Republican party," Moran said. "The party must move forward and regardless of where you are in the conservative spectrum, you definitely can be conservative and an openly gay Republican in this political climate."

"We don't just talk the talk but we actually are providing the boots on the ground, we're making those calls, and we're loyal Republicans," he said.

June 26th, 2008
10:25 AM ET
5 years ago

McCain reaches out to gay Republican group

Sen. John McCain has voiced his opposition to same-sex marriage.
Sen. John McCain has voiced his opposition to same-sex marriage.

WASHINGTON (CNN) –- An official from the Log Cabin Republicans organization says the group representing gay Republicans has had a series of meetings with presumptive Republican presidential nominee John McCain.

The meetings, however, were not disclosed to the press by the McCain campaign. An e-mail from CNN to the McCain campaign for comment was not immediately returned.

A McCain aide told The Politico's Ben Smith that a meeting between McCain and the organization "a few weeks ago" was "scheduled as a meeting with the senator ... Like Sen. Obama, every single campaign-related meeting he has isn't alerted to the press."

In a statement Thursday, Log Cab Republicans President Patrick Sammon confirmed to CNN that the group had a "series of productive meetings with the campaign since Sen. McCain won the nomination—including a recent meeting with the Senator. We expect to have more conversations with the campaign as we head toward November."

While they have yet to endorse McCain, the organization's Web site says they are “encouraged” that he has won the party’s nod.

“Sen. McCain has had a long relationship with Log Cabin Republicans dating back to the opening of our organization’s national office in the mid 1990s."

The LCR endorsed McCain’s Senate reelection bid in 2004.

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Filed under: John McCain • Log Cabin Republicans