View to Washington: Inclusive Republicans Eye Congress

A crop of inclusive Republicans like N.Y. assemblywoman Dierdre Scozzafava are challenging formerly predictable trends about which party presents pro-LGBT candidates.

BY Kerry Eleveld

July 24 2009 11:00 PM ET

Within that list, Malek also named Delaware's Rep. Mike Castle, who gained notoriety this week when he tried to stand down a so-called birther who hijacked his town hall meeting -- claiming Barack Obama was born in Kenya and crying, "I want my country back!" Castle upset the wing nuts by having the nerve to proclaim that President Obama is a U.S. citizen, but I digress.

Like Kirk, Castle is a social moderate who also voted yes on hate crimes and ENDA, and no on the FMA twice.

I could name other moderate Republicans who are eyeing congressional seats -- in Connecticut or New Hampshire, for instance -- but the point is that the GOP is starting to see a resurgence of the moderate in traditionally blue and even purple states. And in most cases, moderate has started to mean LGBT-inclusive.

As one Republican pointed out to me, the Democrats have infiltrated the South by running antigay, pro-gun moderates for the last several election cycles. Republicans are now coming around to the notion that if you run Scozzafava in the northeast, you win -- or at least you have a chance.

And her race, in particular, has already turned the tables on traditional pro-LGBT party dynamics. Shortly after Scozzafava got the nod, Democratic state senator Darrel Aubertine announced that he had decided not to run for the seat. Presumably Aubertine, an anti-marriage equality Democrat, concluded that challenging a pro-marriage equality Republican might not be a smart career move.

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