In The Daily Beast on Monday, Republican political analyst Ford O’Connell asks a provocative question: can former Vice President Dick Cheney’s lesbian daughter, Mary Cheney, “save the GOP?” He answers, in a fashion, “Yes.”
O’Connell examines a number of interesting developments in how Republican partisans and politicians view the issue of same-sex marriage, how rapidly the public’s perception of gay and lesbian couples has evolved, and how the GOP can stop alienating a younger generation on the issue. But while he sees Mary Cheney as having the potential to reorient the GOP on the issue of marriage, O’Connell correctly writes that it is Liz Cheney’s primary campaign in Wyoming that will have the most immediate effects on the trajectory of the GOP’s opinion on gay marriage rights.
O’Connell closes by observing that efficacy still trumps ideology, no matter how divisive the social issue in question may be. New Jersey’s Gov. Chris Christie won reelection, in spite of his opposition to same-sex marriage rights, with the support of a host of traditionally Democratic voting blocs in the Garden State. The message he sees being sent to the GOP nationwide: “Stand by your principled opposition to gay marriage but don’t alienate those who disagree with you.”