Fred Karger, the only Republican presidential candidate who supports gay marriage, has been invited to speak at the party's upcoming California convention.

The invite comes a day after the openly gay candidate said his party had given him “the cold shoulder.”

“I'm thrilled, and I'm glad they came around to let me participate,” he told the San Francisco Chronicle.

Karger said organizers of the September 16-18 event had ignored his attempts to be included but came around after publication of a Chronicle story highlighting the party's actions.

Pointing to a 2 percent showing in several recent polls, Karger insisted he was a legitimate candidate.

But Jimmy LaSalvia, executive director of gay GOP group GOProud, suggested otherwise in comments to the paper.

“Fred Karger is not a credible candidate,” LaSalvia said. “I would love for there to be an openly gay, credible candidate for president who was out there making a case for why they would be better than Barack Obama.”

“Unfortunately, Fred Karger is playing a stunt, and his stunt has run its course. His whole schtick is … running around the country with a rainbow flag, saying 'I'm the gay guy,'” he added. “But he hasn't made a case about why he should be President of the United States.”

State GOP Communications Director Mark Standriff extended an olive branch within an hour of publication of the Chronicle story.

“Fred has always been welcome at the CRP – in fact, we've been working to finalize an event for him at our convention, based on a request from his camp.  We're looking forward to seeing him in L.A. next month.”

Karger is currently campaigning in early caucus state New Hampshire.