A group of gay Republicans will participate in the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) after accusing the conference’s organizers of excluding it.
Gregory T. Angelo, the director of the Log Cabin Republicans, will appear on a panel entitled “Putin’s Russia: A New Cold War?”, the group said Monday.
“Obviously, not being allowed to sponsor this year's event is disappointing, but I'm not going to make the perfect the enemy of the good,” Angelo said in an email. “This panel is an important opportunity to show LCR is more than just 'the gay marriage Republicans,' and to bring a unique perspective to CPAC not represented anywhere else during this year’s conference.”
The announcement comes days after the long-simmering conflict between the Log Cabin Republicans and the American Conservative Union (ACU), which organizes CPAC, burst into public view.
Last week, the group accused the ACU of failing to respond to its attempts to cosponsor the event. The ACU fired back, saying that the Log Cabin Republicans had never formally applied for sponsorship.
The spat was a reminder of the conflict within the GOP as the party tries to appeal to a broader group of voters while satisfying its conservative base.
“I want to make it really clear, gay conservatives should feel comfortable to come to CPAC. Libertarians play an important role in this coalition," ACU Chairman Matt Schlapp said in an interview this weekend. "We don't have enough people in the center right to start excluding people from that coalition. They all need to feel welcome. We need to pull together on the things that we agree with."
Angelo said in a statement Monday that his group regretted if anyone felt that they had been painted in a negative light by the public argument.
“After some very fruitful conversations with the leadership of The American Conservative Union, we would like to express regret if anyone associated with The American Conservative Union felt unfairly maligned,” he said. “That was never our intention.”