DeMaio: The Republican Party Must Change

Carl DeMaio Carl DeMaio 8 Comments

Fresh off the press from The Hill:

California House candidate Carl DeMaio wants to be known as a GOP problem solver, not as one of two openly gay Republicans running for Congress this year.

The libertarian-leaning former San Diego City Councilman, who is challenging freshman Rep. Scott Peters (D-Calif.) in a swing district, boasts of the work he did to help his city avoid bankruptcy.

“I don’t think the biggest unique thing about my candidacy is that I’m the gay guy. I don’t think that’s true,” he said. “I think the uniqueness in my candidacy is I get things done.”

That doesn’t mean the top GOP recruit is shy about criticizing his party on gay rights.

In an interview at the National Republican Congressional Committee’s offices, he expressed frustration with his party’s focus on gay marriage, abortion and other social issues, and argued it was costing the GOP votes.

“People want a new-generation Republican,” he said. “They are sick and tired of the Republican Party getting sidetracked on divisive social issues. They want to see a Republican Party that is able to articulate on a set of solutions on the issues that matter most to the American people.

“If you want to clean up the mess in Washington, you have to start first by cleaning up the mess in the Republican Party,” he said.

Gay rights remains a divisive issue in the Republican Party.

While most Democrats and a majority of Americans support gay marriage, according to polls, only a handful of Republican members of Congress have embraced the issue.

DeMaio’s candidacy as a Republican is an issue for some of his would-be colleagues.

Rep. Randy Forbes (R-Va.) has pushed the National Republican Congressional Committee not to use members’ dues to support gay candidates.

DeMaio ripped Forbes over the issue.

“Unlike Mr. Forbes, San Diegans aren’t focused on sexual orientation,” he said.

“They are focused on the issues that matter to them,” he said, pointing to the economy and national debt.

DeMaio and Peters are locked in a dogfight in a district where President Obama won 52 percent of the vote.

Republicans see DeMaio’s as a viable candidacy, and his victory would let Republicans tout themselves as more of a big tent party.

DeMaio has received backing from a number of national Republicans, including Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), who has fundraised for him.

But he criticized Boehner and the GOP conference for using taxpayer dollars to defend the Defense of Marriage Act, which was struck down by the Supreme Court earlier this year.

“It was a complete waste of federal dollars, a complete waste of time, the fact that they used federal dollars to fund lawyers to drag that issue out,” he said. “And the Supreme Court was pretty clear that under the Constitution, people should be entitled to equal protection under the law.”

He highlighted his ability to work with Democrats on the City Council.

“We got big reforms done in San Diego, and I was on the end of a 2-6 minority, two Republicans and six Democrats, and I was able to reach across the party aisle and get the votes necessary through the legislative branch and then, ultimately, at the ballot box to get things done,” he said.

Immigration and the sequester are both important issues in San Diego, a city near the border with a huge military population.

He said he was still reviewing the bipartisan budget deal struck by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) but offered it some tepid praise, saying it makes “some progress.” He ripped sequestration, which hit the military-heavy district hard, as taking “a meat cleaver to budget reductions.”

He refused to say whether he would have voted for the House Republican budget, arguing it was a “somewhat confining” hypothetical because he would have been in office to propose his own ideas. But he praised the plan.

“The Ryan budget provides a starting point of a lot of good ideas … but a year from now, I want people talking about the DeMaio budget,” he said. “I’m going to be coming out here as a budget expert, and I want to be a big voice in the discussions on the federal budget and how we balance the budget in a way that’s consistent with our values, where we don’t sacrifice important programs that working families rely on.”

DeMaio said he hopes the House will pass major immigration reform before the next elections, though he argued that any offer of citizenship for illegal immigrants should be contingent on first securing the border, a major stumbling block in negotiations.

DeMaio said some illegal immigrants should be given a path to citizenship, singling out well-educated immigrants and those who came here as children. But he was hesitant to say whether the majority of low-skilled workers should be offered the same deal.

“It depends on how many and how fast,” he said. “The idea that we would simply grandfather everyone in is something I don’t think the American people support, but I think we can come up with programs targeted toward people with certain criteria.”

DeMaio said that the party also needed to come up with a positive vision rather than just attack Democrats.

“[The GOP] has been the party of no. We’ve got to become the party of ‘we don’t agree with this, but here’s our solution,’ ” he said. “That’s a positive way of solving problems, and that’s what the American people want to see, no matter what party they’re in.”


Comments 8

  1. Mr DeMaio, as with many “New Generation” types want to craft the issue to form a subtle narrative of intolerance for those who may not agree with the “majority of the American People…” as he shaped it in his article.

    To paraphrase; “You need to change…you just don’t get it (you old white men)…we’re here…and you just need to deal with that…and if you have issue, conviction, or discern between your archane morality and your aversion to the direct assault of it by people that will not, ever, accept your moral stance…tough…”

    How delectably Bolshevik….

    If you ask someone in this day and age, “Do you have a problem with the gay life style, or gay unions?” Certainly the majority of people would answer either “no” or “not particularly”…stipulated… (I am personally in this category)

    However, if you ask them “do you agree with mandatory gay lifestyle sensitivity classes for children K-6”, or “Do you agree with gender-norming bathroom arrangements for transgender children using facilities with sexually unambiguous children in your grade school?” then the answer is quite different. (I am also in this category)

    Overwhelmingly different.

    I for one could care less what anyone does with another consenting adult in the privacy of their own home…as with heterosexual couples……it is when many Republicans see a concerted, even insidious attempt to remove any vestiges of God or Christ, and minimalizing the time-proven benefits and statistical advantages of a child in a home with a father and mother, the Nuclear Family, from the class room while there is a concerted effort, either directly or tacitly supported, by politicians, politicos, bureaucrats and administrators, and others like Mr. DeMaio to insert constructs that millions of Americans do NOT want taught or indoctrinated to their children all in the name of “equality” “tolerance” and “fairness.” It is a red hearing…to add further, the argument goes not only are you wrong-headed if you support the time-honored marriage construct over a homosexual one, then you are bigoted, intolerant, “homo-phobic” , obtuse, and, ergo, dangerous.

    Antonin Scalia put it best when addressing the Prop 8 issue…

    “But to defend traditional marriage is not to condemn, demean, or humiliate those who would prefer other arrangements, any more than to defend the Constitution of the United States is to condemn, demean, or humiliate other constitutions. To hurl such accusations so casually demeans this institution. In the majority’s judgment (pro-gay marriage), any resistance to its holding is beyond the pale of reasoned disagreement. To question its high-handed invalidation of a presumptively valid statute is to act (the majority is sure) with the purpose to “disparage,” “injure,” “degrade,” “demean,” and “humiliate” our fellow human beings, our fellow citizens, who are homosexual. All that, simply for supporting an Act that did no more than codify an aspect of marriage that had been unquestioned in our society for most of its existence— indeed, had been unquestioned in virtually all societies for virtually all of human history. It is one thing for a society to elect change; it is another for a court of law to impose change by adjudging those who oppose it hostes humani generis, enemies of the human race.”

    Mr. DeMaio and Faulconer would do well to have studied Justice Scalia premise before they both decided unilaterally to nullify the conviction of hundreds of thousands of their fellow Californians when they both signed the pledge as Councilmen to essentially dismiss and not accept a Prop 8 ruling in San Diego. Whether you agree or not with their stance on Gay Marriage or Abortion, what they did was to ignore the will of the majority of San Diegans and Californians, the people they claim to support in the name of political expedience and correctness…the more adroit question is, what would be the next issue either of them, as Congressman or Mayor, ignore and against the majority of their constituents in the name or personal or political expediency?

  2. Well put. If San Diegans shared the same world and life view of Carl De Maio he would have been elected mayor. Instead he was defeated by that old socialist warhorse Bob Filner. The words “fiscal conservative” do not work any particular magic if the persons uttering them are simultaneously standing on the quicksand consisting of supporting abortion and sodomy.

  3. Mole,

    I am sure your comment about sodomy was a slam on the fact that DeMaio is Gay. I admit to not having done any surveys on the subject, but I am still quite sure that most acts of sodomy take place between consenting heterosexuals.

  4. Mole,

    That was quite the leap in logic. Back to my previous point, are you saying that the government should regulate the type of sex that consenting adults can have?

  5. Actually, YOU are the candidate being supported by the Establishment You have the support of the NRCC and of several RINO Republican leaders, like Boehner, Cantor, and McCarthy, not to mention the barely achieved endorsement of the RPSDC. How much more establishment could you possibly get?

    YOU support abortion, genderless “marriage.” and amnesty for illegals. They WANT you on their team because they think you’ll bolster Republican voter registration for “moderates” who agree with you on these issues. Why would true conservatives support THEM by supporting you? We will not!

    What you will do is cause the Republican base to flee the Republican Party even more than they already are. They may not register as Democrats, but they WILL register as DTS or Independent, or just give up voting when RINO candidates like you are foisted on them. We already have about a quarter of the voters in San Diego registered as DTS, and you will only increase that.

    It’s simple. Why would any Republican support a candidate who so clearly dismisses most Republican core values, who doesn’t care at all for what the Party says it stands for in its Platform, and who would vote with the Democrats on most issues?

    Besides that, you have never served this country in the military or in any capacity at the national level. You have no clue what it’s like to put your life on the line for our country. You have no clue what it’s like to struggle as a member of a military family or as a veteran yourself. And you have no clue what it’s like in a war zone. No, I don’t expect every candidate to have that experience. But when given a choice, I will, unless given a reason not to as we all were with John McCain, put my support with a veteran. We need more of them in Congress, not more RINOs like you.

  6. Boehner and Cantor are RINO’s? Seriously?

    At their best, none of the classic comedies were as funny as watching the current infighting in the Republican Party.

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