Conservative Group Criticizes CPAC Over GOProud Invite

At least one group of social conservatives isn’t very happy about the invitation extended to a gay conservative group to next year’s Conservative Political Action Conference:

A conservative group has backed out of the annual CPAC conservative political conference, citing the participation of a gay Republican group.

The¬†American Principles Project president Frank Cannon wrote an open letter yesterday to CPAC chair David Keene, saying that his group could not participate in the conference because of GOProud’s role in the event.

“Having now examined closely GOProud’s mission and its behavior since its inception, we can only conclude that the organization’s purposes are fundamentally incompatible with a movement that has long embraced the ideals of family and faith in a thriving civil society. They have further defined themselves with their attacks on Senator Jim DeMint, one of the key leaders of this year’s conservative victory,” wrote Cannon.

“A sound conservatism stands equally upon the pillars of fiscal responsibility, limited government, and traditional values. To actively seek to undermine or destroy one of these ‘legs’ of the conservative foundation is to endanger the movement as a whole. By allowing GOProud to be a prominent part of CPAC 2011, Mr. Keene and the American Conservative Union have demonstrated a dangerous disregard for the importance of faith, marriage, and the family in our conservative values,” said APP executive director Andy Blom in a statement

There were similar protests when GOProud was made a cosponsor of CPAC 2010, and several groups choose not to attend the conference because of that invitation, and that invitation was also one of the factors that Mike Huckabee cited when he said that he didn’t attend last year’s conference because it had become “too libertarian.” The controversy is noteworthy if only because of GOProud’s role in the debate that erupted this week over whether the GOP should place any emphasis as all on social issues in the upcoming session of Congress and, while some on the right are already trying to question GOProud’s conservative bona fides, the reception to the idea of a truce on social issues has actually been surprisingly positive on the right. It will be interesting to see how this plays out over the coming year.

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Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. Conservatives must be glad the election is finally over, so they can stop pretending to care about personal liberty and limiting intrusive government for another two years.