Democrats on Thursday targeted Republican hope in Congress Bruce Poliquin for his “tacit support” of a conservative Christian political group that remains deeply opposed to the legalization of same-sex marriage nearly a decade ago.
Poliquin is expected to help with a candidate training session in December, hosted by the Christian Civic League of Maine, a politically active group that said the recent decision by the Republican National Committee to form a new RNC pride coalition, “threatens to undermine the pro-GOP faith and family values.
In its latest newsletter, the group said that the National Party’s “incredibly disappointing” decision “shows why the GOP is not the same with organizations for the defense of Christians.”
In the same newsletter, the group announced that former United States Representative Poliquin, the best-known of the four Republicans scrambling to become the party’s congressional candidate for the 2nd District next year, will help train the candidates. to become “local Christian leaders in politics who will advocate for the truth of God.
Poliquin, who could not be reached for comment, is expected to participate in a roundtable discussion on December 10 during training with Heather Pouliot, city councilor in Augusta.
The two-day candidate training session at Faith Evangelical Free Church in Waterville was created, the group said, “to encourage people who have never considered running for elected office before to acquire the knowledge and the tools needed to show up at local races, such as as a school committee or even state offices like Maine House. ”
“The Christian Civic League of Maine envisions a state and a nation where God is honored, religious freedom flourishes, families prosper and life is cherished,” the event registration page reads.
Democrats have taken note.
Jacob Stern, director of communications for the Democratic Party of Maine, said: “Poliquin’s unspoken endorsements of the Christian Civic League’s staunchly anti-LGBTQ agenda are deeply at odds with the beliefs of the vast majority of Mainers. “
“There is just no place in Maine for candidates who want to go back on basic LGBTQ rights like same-sex marriage,” Stern said.
Voters in Maine in 2012 approved a bill that promoted the legalization of same-sex marriages by a margin of 53-47, one of three states that day that legalized same-sex marriage by referendum. The Supreme Court then made it the law of the land with its 2015 ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges, which required all states to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
Poliquin has defended his own position on gay rights in the past.
“I have always been against discrimination against anyone, anywhere and anytime,” Poliquin said in 2016 after criticizing he changed his vote on an anti-discrimination measure, to help the Republicans to block it by a narrow margin in the Loger.
The Christian Civic League of Maine, however, makes no secret of its opposition to gay rights.
The group said in its November 18 newsletter: “We believe that the biblical definition of marriage is the only valid definition – and that is the definition provided by God.
He calls the “LGBTQ program” a “serious threat to parental rights and religious freedom”.
The group said, “We cannot promote the truth of God by uniting with secular groups that brag about dangerous, anti-confessional and anti-family ideas” and cited the RNC decision as “just one example. of why Christians should get involved in politics ”.
“Now more than ever, the political sphere is in desperate need of a voice that prioritizes God’s truth and a biblical worldview over secular covenants,” he said. “No political power is worth sacrificing our values; and loving people, as we are called to do, often requires that we condemn their ideas.
“This means that taking care of the LGBTQ community means that we have to speak out against their nefarious agenda,” he said, adding that the national GOP “has done the opposite in its decision to partner with the LGBTQ community”.
At least some Republicans have agreed that the National Party should not have allied with the gay-friendly Republicans Log Cabin to form the new Pride Coalition.
Texas Republican Party Chairman Matt Rinaldi issued a press release saying, “We do not believe that building GOP versions of left movements advances our cause and do not support this decision of the Republican National Committee.”
Republican national leader Ronna McDaniel was so criticized by her announcement in early November of the new Pride Coalition, that she apologized this week for treating it awkwardly.
“We are simply replicating and continuing the outreach structure put in place by the Trump campaign,” McDaniel said in an email to party insiders. “It’s important to make new inroads for future elections, especially for close races. This is why we are doing this.
The 2022 platform proposed by the Republican Party of Maine includes a provision calling marriage “the union of a man and a woman.”
Poliquin has three main opponents he will have to survive or defeat before he can serve as the Republican’s standard bearer, in what promises to be a close race against two-term US Representative Jared Golden, a Lewiston Democrat who has taken over. his duties in 2018 after overthrowing Poliquin.
Other GOP contenders are Liz Caruso of Caratunk, State Representative Mike Perkins of Oakland and Sean Joyce of Newburgh.
The Christian Civic League of Maine was established in 1897 as a non-partisan, non-profit research and education organization. Its mission is “to bring a biblical perspective to public policy issues that impact the family and to equip citizens to be persuasive voices on behalf of traditional family values in their localities.”
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