GOP's 'Young Guns' Program Backs Pro-Abortion, Pro-Gay Marriage Candidates for Congress

Michael W. Chapman | December 13, 2013 | 11:58am EST
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(AP Image)

( – Although the Republican Party Platform opposes abortion and same-sex marriage, the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) is backing and promoting through its "Young Guns" program two congressional candidates who are homosexual, and who support same-sex marriage and abortion.

In addition, one of the "Young Guns" candidates, Carl DeMaio, has received $15,000 from the political arm of House GOP leaders Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Va.) and Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), while the other candidate, Richard Tisei, “has won the support of the entire House Republican leadership, including a $5,000 check from the PAC run by the vice-presidential nominee, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.)," reported the Washington Post.

Richard Tisei, who is “married” to his male partner Bernie Starr, in Edgartown, Mass., is running for a congressional seat in the 6th District in the Bay State.   Carl DeMaio is running for a congressional seat out of San Diego, Calif.

GOP congressional candidate Richard Tisei of Massachusetts. (AP)

DeMaio, who is openly gay, supports abortion and same-sex marriage.  In a press release, he said, “I see myself as a 'new generation Republican' who wants to challenge the party to focus on pocket-book, economic and quality of life issues in a more positive and inclusive way, rather than issues that are, frankly, none of the government's business in the first place.”

Tisei supports same-sex marriage and is pro-abortion, having received a 100% rating from NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts. The NRCC is spending money on television ads attacking Tisei's opponent, Rep. John Tierney (D-Mass.), as is YG Action, a political action committee founded by former aides to House Minority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), reported the Washington Post.

Concerning Tisei’s congressional run, Cantor told the Washington Post, "We all came here from somewhere. It is the opportunity that drew us here, and he will have every bit of opportunity, as an openly gay Republican, as any other Republican. I told him, we're fully behind him. I'm supportive of his candidacy and look forward to serving with him."

The National Republican Congressional Committee announced on Nov. 21 that Tisei and DeMaio were among 36 candidates placed "On the Radar" level of the "Young Guns" program.

"‘On the Radar’ is the first level of the committee’s ‘Young Guns’ program, and will help to provide candidates and their campaigns the tools they need to run successful, winning campaigns against their Democratic opponents," states the NRCC. "As participants in this program, these candidates will continue to work with the committee and the program’s original founders to ensure that their campaigns remain competitive, well-funded and communicative within their districts."

The NRCC also provides a website page, "Young Guns," with photos and links to individual pages for the 36 "On the Radar" candidates.  The page states that "On the Radar candidates are individuals running in competitive congressional seats. They have met the minimum threshold in campaign organization and show potential to achieve greater status in the program as the cycle progresses."

National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Greg Walden. (AP)

On the "About" page for "Young Guns," it states the program was co-founded in 2007-08 by Reps. Eric Cantor (R-Va.), Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), and Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) and that it "seeks to grow the Republican Majority in the House of Representatives." It further says, "Candidates who achieve Young Gun status have successfully collaborated with the NRCC and completed the benchmarks that establish a path to victory on Election Day."

There is also a quote from NRCC Chairman Greg Walden, “The Young Guns program recruits top tier candidates to challenge their liberal opponents and bring sound, conservative principles to their home districts and to Washington, D.C.”

On the "Young Guns" page for Carl DeMaio, the NRCC provides a brief bio and says DeMaio "knows how to reform government and has built his business and political career on making broken government programs work again for the people."

GOP congressional candidate Carl DeMaio of San Diego, Calif. (AP)

At the bottom of the DeMaio page it says, "Paid for by the National Republican Congressional Committee and not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee."   It further states, "Contributions to political committees or candidate campaigns are not deductible as charitable contributions for Federal income tax purposes."

The National Republican Congressional Committee also provides a "Young Guns" page for Richard Tisei that gives some biographical information and notes that it was paid for by the NRCC.

Neither the DeMaio page nor the Tisei page mentions that the candidate is gay or that both men support abortion and same-sex marriage. Nor does Tisei's "Young Guns" page mention that he is "married" to his partner.

But both pages do provide a prominent announcement at the top of each page that reads, "Contribute to the Young Guns Program." That announcement links to a donation page where people can contribute by credit card to the program.

(AP Photo)

Like previous Republican platforms, the 2012 Republican Party Platform, approved by the delegates to the 2012 national convention, includes an unambiguous pro-life plank.

"Faithful to the 'self-evident' truths enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, we assert the sanctity of human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed," says the platform. "We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to unborn children. We oppose using public revenues to promote or perform abortion or fund organizations which perform or advocate it and will not fund or subsidize health care which includes abortion coverage. We support the appointment of judges who respect traditional family values and the sanctity of innocent human life."

“Through Obamacare," the platform says, "the current Administration has promoted the notion of abortion as healthcare. We, however, affirm the dignity of women by protecting the sanctity of human life. Numerous studies have shown that abortion endangers the health and wellbeing of women, and we stand firmly against it.” (See GOP Platform 2012.pdf )

House Minority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), left, and Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) (AP)

As for “gay marriage,” the 2012 Republican Party Platform says, “We reaffirm our support for a Constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman. We applaud the citizens of the majority of States which have enshrined in their constitutions the traditional concept of marriage, and we support the campaigns underway in several other States to do so.”

Liberal courts seeking to redefine marriage as something other than being between one man and one woman “is an assault on the foundations of our society, challenging the institution which, for thousands of years in virtually every civilization, has been entrusted with the rearing of children and the transmission of cultural values,” reads the GOP Platform.  (See GOP Platform 2012.pdf )

That is why Congressional Republicans took the lead in enacting the Defense of Marriage Act, affirming the right of States and the federal government not to recognize same-sex relationships licensed in other Jurisdictions," states the GOP platform. "The current administration's open defiance of this constitutional principle -- in its handling of immigration cases, in federal personnel benefits, in allowing a same-sex marriage at a military base, and in refusing to defend DOMA in the courts -- makes a mockery of the President's inaugural oath."

Rep. Randy Forbes (R-Va.) (AP)

In a statement obtained by the Virginia-Pilot, Rep. Randy Forbes (R-Va.) said: “The definition of marriage is an issue with widely divergent opinions passionately held by both sides. This is true of the Republican Party, as it is of society.   Our goal is to make certain every individual has the right to express his or her belief, while no one is compelled to support financially or otherwise, those who disagree with them. It is my belief that we are trying to strike this balance and we will continue to work to accomplish this goal.”

According to the Virginia-Pilot newspaper, “Forbes' campaign fund has given more than $275,000 to the NRCC since 2006."

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