Today, Donald Trump officially made his choice for Vice President: Mike Pence of Indiana. I do not agree at all with this choice. Even though I do not support Trump and will not vote for him in November, I am concerned about the overall negative perceptions that this will leave with mainstream America in regards to the Republican Party.
So what is wrong with Mike Pence? For me, it was his the handling of the Religious Liberties bill for his state. Within the LGBTQ+ community, this bill was perceived to be an effort to make it legal to discriminate against their community based on their sexual orientation. This is not the message I want to be sending to the gay community from the Republican Party. As I explained in my previous post, The Need to Fix Republican Branding, the Republican Party, to be able to be able to expand their voter base and to be able to win the presidency, needs to start being more welcoming, and to start fighting battles that do not drive away massive amounts of people. To do this, you need to send a message to the gay community that they are valued and accepted by the Republican Party for who they are and that their contributions would always be welcomed into the party. By choosing Mike Pence, someone who signed into law a bill that so many within the LGBTQ+ community opposed, you are only reinforcing perceptions about the Republican Party, that it is neither accepting or understanding of the gay community’s needs, nor do they wish them to ever be involved in the Republican Party. To me, having Mike Pence as the Vice Presidential pick once again drives more people away from the party than what it attracts, and sends them straight to the Secretary Hillary Clinton camp without them even considering other Republican policies.
I was further disheartened to have read that the Log Cabin Republicans reported that the Republican Party passed their 2016 platform that, for all intents and purposes, was the most ‘Anti-LGBT platform’ in the party’s history. Here is a link to that story: Log Cabin Republican President: GOP passed most anti-LGBT platform in p. arty history. I want my fellow Republicans to wake up. Demographics are changing in this country. The ways of ostracizing the gay community are not acceptable. The more you do this, the more you increase your chances of losing every presidential race from here on out, and are only increasing your chances of losing both the House and Senate. You risk marginalizing your entire party, and ensuring that the Republican Party will never hold high office again. The more you remain obstinate in your disapproval and judgmental nature of the gay community, your party will continue to lose. As a loyal Republican, I do not want to see this happen; I want this problem to be fixed before it is too late.
The Republican Party needs to earn the trust of the American People for them to vote them into high office; to trust them to represent their needs. Having someone like Mike Pence or encouraging language in the party platform that proves divisive, such as with the North Carolina bathroom bill and language against gay marriage, only shows many people that the party is not ready to be trusted with their needs. You have to prove that you are willing to govern over everyone, and not just your own constituencies. And until the Republican Party stops trying to enforce its own way of doing things on the whole population, the Republican Party will continue to see defeat every four years. This needs to change.