What a difference a month makes.
Last month, the leaders of GOProud — the gay conservative group — were dinging Mitt Romney for not standing up for Richard Grenell, a well-regarded national security expert who resigned from the Romney campaign under intense pressure from religious conservatives upset about his sexuality and support for same-sex marriage.
On Wednesday, GOProud gave Romney its official endorsement.
“GOProud is prepared to commit significant resources to help make Mitt Romney the next president of the United States,” interim GOProud Chairwoman Lisa De Pasquale said in a statement.
But GOProud still has reservations about Romney’s positions on LGBT rights. When Grenell left the campaign, gay Republicans worried that Romney was letting the anti-gay right dictate his positions.
Indeed, the group’s co-founder admitted that they disagree with Romney on what is perhaps their signature issue.
“We don’t agree with Gov. Romney on every single issue — indeed with disagree strongly with him on his support for a federal marriage amendment and we have urged Romney publicly to take bolder and more conservative stances on tax reform, entitlement reform and spending,” GOProud co-founder Jimmy LaSalvia said in a statement. “Given the vote on our board, obviously not everyone in our organization will agree with this endorsement, and we respect that.”
At least one GOProud board member, co-founder Chris Barron, who works for Libertarian nominee Gary Johnson, voted against the Romney endorsement. Former Rick Perry adviser Liz Mair, who is on the group’s advisory board, tweeted she was “not personally on board” with the endorsement, but said, “I obviously support” GOProud and will remain on the advisory board.
LaSalvia would not say directly whether the endorsement means all is forgiven on the Grenell episode.
“We have said all we are going to say about that situation,” he told TPM. The endorsement, LaSalvia said, “means that [Romney is] the best candidate to beat Barack Obama in November, and we have long said that our No. 1 goal this year is to defeat Barack Obama.”
Grenell told TPM that there are more than just LGBT issues motivating LGBT voters.
“An overwhelming majority of voters select their candidates by looking at a variety of issues,” he said. “If you agree with a politician 100 percent of the time then you are probably the candidate.”