Colorado-based Focus on the Family is
threatening to ditch the annual Conservative Political Action
Conference (CPAC) convention because of gay GOP group GOProud's
Tom Minnery, the senior vice president
of the Focus lobbying arm CitizenLink, told
Gazette that his group will attend February's event to offset
GOProud's presence, but added that the group was questioning future
“When you don't have the influence of
organizations like ours you end up with influences from organizations
like GOProud,” he said.
The three-day convention to be held at
the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel in Washington, DC will feature such
anti-gay figures as media personality Ann Coulter, South Carolina
Senator Jim DeMint, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, former
Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee and former Pennsylvania Senator Rick
GOProud's attendance has already
spurred three socially conservative groups to boycott this year's
convention, including FRC Action, the political arm of the Family
Research Council, Concerned Women for America (CWA), and the National
Organization for Marriage (NOM), the nation's most vociferous
anti-gay marriage group.
Liberty University Law School, the
Christian-based university founded by the late Jerry Falwell, bailed
on last year's event due to GOProud's presence.
But the mostly college aged crowd the
convention draws does not appear to have much of an interest in
When Ryan Sorba, a member of the
California chapter of the Young Americans for Freedom, condemned CPAC
for including GOProud in last year's event he
was booed off the stage.
“We hope that all conservative
organizations would participate, because it takes a broad-based
conservative organization to come together to work, to offer
solutions to the problems facing our country, and we think it takes
everybody. And we hope all conservatives will participate in CPAC.
It's an enormous event, and it brings people from all over the
country, and we're excited to be a part of it,” Jimmy LaSalvia,
executive director of GOProud, told Talking