A Republican strategist is trying to rally right-wing gay people around Presidential hopeful Donald Trump.
Trump was previously a lukewarm supporter of LGBT issues, but has changed his stance repeatedly during the campaign in a bid to appeal to the broad Republican base.
The presumptive Republican Presidential nominee has recently opposed transgender rights, pledged to appoint justices to repeal equal marriage, and come out against federal anti-discrimination protections.
But Trump – who claimed in a speech this week after the Orlando massacre that a victory for Hillary Clinton would lead to the mass murder of gay people across the US – has succeeded in attracted support from right-wing gays.
Presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton has near-unanimously swept up endorsements from national LGBT organisations, many of whom point to her comprehensive manifesto of detailed LGBT policies. Trump does not appear to list a single policy on LGBT rights on his website.
But Chris Barron, former head of Republican gay group GOProud, has launched an effort to rally LGBT supporters behind Trump.
Barron – who blogger JoeMyGod points out has previously declined to endorse LGBT hate crime legislation and refers to gay left-wingers as “the American Taliban” – declared Trump the “most pro-gay Republican nominee ever”.
He told CNN: “Despite my differences with Trump in the past, it was a slam dunk. I want Donald Trump to be President. For me, terrorism and our safety in this world is an LGBT issue. Healthcare is an LGBT issue. Retirement security is an LGBT issue. Jobs is an LGBT issue.
“All of those issues impact the LGBT community. I have no doubt that a Donald Trump presidency would be better for LGBT Americans.”
He added: “Donald Trump can say that he disagrees on the issue of marriage but it’s a settled issue. We’re not going to have a constitutional amendment, we’re not going to have the Supreme Court reverse it.
“The Left wants gay people to believe that, because they want to scare you into voting for Hillary Clinton. That’s not the case.”
Dan Savage said yesterday: “Donald Trump has pledged to undo marriage equality. Donald Trump is the enemy of the LGBT community just as he is the enemy of the Muslim community.
“Beating up on what is, in the United States, a vulnerable minority group isn’t the way that you impress other members of other vulnerable minority groups to win their support.”