Oregon Republicans strip anti-gay language from party platform


The Oregon Republican party has voted to the remove language from the official party platform that some members saw as needlessly hostile toward gays.

The change is a conscious effort to attract younger voters — as well as more gays and lesbians — to the party, said one party member.

Wording that essentially condemned same-sex marriage and civil unions, and that stated such couples were unfit to be parents, was removed from the official party platform during a weekend convention in Bend.

“We want the public to take another look at the Republican Party and our policies,” said Greg Leo, spokesman for the state party. “It’s fair to say we’re more centrist.”

The once-dominant party has faded in Oregon. Democrats hold every statewide office and no Republican has been elected governor since 1987.

According to Ken Taylor, chairman of the Crook County Republican Party, the platform remains very pro-traditional family.

“We removed some wording that some felt was offensive,” Taylor said. “But we are still the party of traditional family values.”

Leo said that language supporting marriage as between one man and one woman remains intact in the platform, but that merely comports with Oregon’s constitution.

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