Delaware GOP targets state party leader over his support for marriage equality

John Fluharty

John Fluharty

GEORGETOWN, Del. — Some Delaware Republicans are trying to push out the state party’s executive director because of his public support for legalizing same-sex marriage.

Sussex County, Del., Republican leaders introduced a nonbinding resolution at a monthly meeting this week calling for the dismissal of GOP Executive Director John Fluharty, saying his views conflict with those of the party he represents.

John Fluharty

John Fluharty, who is gay, attended a Wilmington fundraiser last month for Equality Delaware, which advocates the legalization of same-sex marriage in the state.

The resolution, which is purely symbolic and must be reviewed by a subcommittee before a final vote, states that state party employees should “publicly reflect” the stated positions of the party.

Meanwhile, a bill to legalize same-sex marriage is expected to be filed in the state House of Representatives on Thursday, before lawmakers return to Dover next week.

Gov. Jack Markell told about 200 supporters of same-sex marriage Monday he would sign legislation in favor of marriage equality if it passes in the state legislature.

Recent polling in Delaware shows that a strong majority of voters want the General Assmebly to pass legislation legalizing same-sex marriage.

The poll, commissioned by Equality Delaware, found that voters support marriage equality by a 17-point margin, with 54 percent of voters in favor of extending marriage rights to same-sex couples, compare to 37 percent opposed.

Associated Press contributed to this report.

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