Illinois GOP chair resigns, cites support for same-sex marriage as a reason
May 7th, 2013
08:26 AM ET
9 years ago

Illinois GOP chair resigns, cites support for same-sex marriage as a reason

Washington (CNN) – Illinois Republican Party Chairman Pat Brady resigned Tuesday, citing a handful of reasons including an ongoing struggle with several members of the state GOP over his support for same-sex marriage.

"There were several reasons," why he decided to step down, Brady said in a telephone interview with CNN. "I've been going at it hard for six years, I need to focus on my family, and obviously I had lost the support of the state Central Committee because of my position on gay marriage."

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Brady was elected chair in August 2009. His wife is battling cancer.

Brady is a close confidante of Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus and Sen. Mark Kirk, R-Illinois. Kirk announced his support for same-sex marriage last month, while Brady did so earlier this year. Brady's public support of same-sex marriage angered social conservatives because it went against the state GOP platform on the issue. At the time Brady said it was a personal endorsement and reiterated that in the interview Tuesday with CNN.

The Illinois state legislature is considering legislation to legalize same-sex marriage. In speaking about Kirk and same-sex marriage, Brady said, "I agree with him, we need to get on the right side of history."

Brady also suggested the party is at a crossroads and needs to decide if it can be a party where "people can disagree on some issues" but agree on many others.

The RNC is currently working on a plan to help broaden the GOP's appeal beyond its traditional political base such as reaching out to minorities and younger voters – voting blocs it lost to Democrats by wide margins in 2012.

Under pressure from social conservatives, the RNC approved two resolutions last month re-affirming its position of only recognizing that marriage is a union between one man and one woman.

Filed under: Illinois • Republicans • Same-sex marriage
soundoff (34 Responses)
  1. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House -aka- No Redemption Votes

    Yes GOP! Castrate your leader because he's living in the 21st century. Here's a message for you GOP: If you don't change your ways and positions on equality, you won't see the White House possibly for another two decades.

    May 7, 2013 08:34 am at 8:34 am |
  2. thomase

    It's a shame to be run out of a party over social issues.

    May 7, 2013 08:52 am at 8:52 am |
  3. Phil Esteen

    Finally a Republican demonstrates the cajones to say 'government does not belong in our bedrooms' and a bunch of right wing hypocrites, who are clearly showing support for big government and theocratic influence, undercut the man.

    Just once I would like to see conservatives advance their thinking beyond America circa 1950.

    May 7, 2013 08:56 am at 8:56 am |
  4. HenryMiller

    Unfortunate—it's the self-righteous, bigoted, religious nuts that pretty much ruined the GOP.

    May 7, 2013 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  5. ST

    I am not surprised anyone who has the right thinking will stick on GOP. Ask yourself, what does it mean of the word GOP? It is the Grand Old Party! Old Party with Old Thinking as well.

    May 7, 2013 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  6. vikingwoman

    It's sad that he's making this decision now! The American people need Republicans like him, who want to be on the right side of equal & human rights! Since his wife is fighting breastcancer, there are probably personal reasons for this decison, as well! Hope she get's better & I hope he sticks to his convictions & continues to lead his party in the right (so to speak) direction!!

    May 7, 2013 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  7. The Real Tom Paine

    Its the party of stupid, alright. Whomever they put in charge will have an uphill battle convincing Independents that the GOP is in favor of freedom when they pull crap like this.

    May 7, 2013 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  8. rs

    The circular firing squad lives!

    May 7, 2013 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  9. Al-NY,NY

    the purity party at work....

    May 7, 2013 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  10. MS

    And the GOP rebranding continues. Fools

    May 7, 2013 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  11. jkane sfl the gop national disgrace party will be swept out like the trash they are in2014 ?

    Brain dead gop will never change and will lose the house and senate in 2014 ,who needs the gop to get anything done ,they will be gone and good redence!!!!!!!!!

    May 7, 2013 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  12. anotherGDlefty

    C'mon over to the left side of the aisle Mr. Brady, we will welcome you in spite of your checkered past....of trying to move the GOP forward.

    May 7, 2013 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  13. ghostriter

    The big tent party indeed. We welcome all.....all that think exactly as they are told to think.

    May 7, 2013 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  14. jpmichigan

    This is what is wrong with the GOP, to judgmental and do not live in the 21 century. RTW (Right to Work) they state it is good for employee for it gives them choices, yet they are hard nose on women rights and gay persons rights. It will be a looooong time before an Republican become President.

    May 7, 2013 09:53 am at 9:53 am |

    Jp, im frrom mi., rtw is simply an attempt to cut funding for the dems, unions are the least destructive donors left

    May 7, 2013 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  16. John from Brooklyn

    It's so sad that the GOP...the party of Lincoln and civil liberties for everyone...continues to purge itself of anyone that isn't of the radical Christian right or the Tea Party orthodoxy. The GOP is killing itself through its own inquisition.

    May 7, 2013 10:20 am at 10:20 am |

    This is almost painful to watch, if they were not raping our constitution in an attempt to hold on to what little power they have left, truly pathetic mindset

    May 7, 2013 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  18. Sniffit

    Translation: "I've suddenly discovered that I'm slightly too human to be a GOPer/Teatroll anymore."

    May 7, 2013 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  19. Sniffit

    "Unfortunate—it's the self-righteous, bigoted, religious nuts that pretty much ruined the GOP."

    Sorry, but it's the GOP/Teatrolls who courted them and used their one-issue-voter mindset as the wedges for dividing the electorate. It's the GOP's own fault. Had the GOP stuck with the real issues, accepted rulings like Roe v. Wade as the law of the land, etc., then the religious nuts would have been properly marginalized and, instead of watching the GOP enact symbolic social conservative wish-legislation repeatedly over the past few years, they'd have been forced to stop ignoring the real issues and get on with doing their jobs instead of pandering to the albatross around their neck.

    May 7, 2013 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  20. Data Driven

    I wish people like Pat Brady would STAY in positions of power within the GOP. Allowing himself to be drummed out by bigots only encourages the Republican Party to continue to be a lunatic opposition party, rather than a loyal opposition party. This country is hurt by having only one viable, sane political party.

    May 7, 2013 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  21. Howard

    @Phil Esteen. Really? When have the GOP been for big government?

    May 7, 2013 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  22. BSH

    Illinois still has a Republican party? Can't tell, with all the corruption coming from Chicago.

    May 7, 2013 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  23. us_1776

    And the internal GOP civil war continues....


    May 7, 2013 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  24. Give me beashtiality

    Good riddance! Now he can attend sodomy ceremonies without fear

    May 7, 2013 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  25. really


    @Phil Esteen. Really? When have the GOP been for big government?

    May 7, 2013 10:59 am at 10:59 am |

    Homeland Security

    May 7, 2013 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
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