Breaking new ground in the Republican Party’s relationship with the gay community, the leaders of the GOP’s two congressional campaign committees will be honored at a fundraising reception hosted by the Log Cabin Republicans on Wednesday evening.
Senator John Cornyn (R-TX), Chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, and Representative Pete Sessions (R-TX), Chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee, are this year’s recipients of the Barry Goldwater Award recognizing “leaders in the Republican Party who have served their nation with distinction in the model of the late Senator Barry Goldwater.” Cornyn is scheduled to attend the dinner. Sessions was forced to cancel last minute due to a House GOP Conference meeting. He is recording a video message to the group and sending an NRCC staffer in his place.
Neither Texan has a particularly strong gay-rights record. Both oppose same-sex marriage and Cornyn, just on Tuesday, joined other Republicans in blocking consideration of an amendment to end Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. But being honored at the Log Cabin event is both remarkable and historic, reflecting a small but important tectonic shift in GOP politics. Casey Pick, the programs officer at the Log Cabin Republicans confirmed that it is the “first time” that a single head of a Republican campaign committee has attended the dinner.
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