Via the Daily Caller, this question would be more interesting put to a Republican who doesn’t have skin in the electoral game. As it is, how can you trust you’re getting an honest answer? Rule one of being a politician: Never, ever tell someone you don’t want their vote. There are exceptions to that for truly odious segments of the electorate — neo-Nazis, for instance, or people who are tired of war, per Lindsey Graham — but otherwise, when you’re asked if someone is welcome in your party, the answer is yes. And that’s especially true when that someone is a prominent member of a small but well funded and politically powerful niche like LGBT voters. Pick a fight with Jenner, the left-media’s new secular saint, and you’re picking a fight with the whole movement. Even Rick Santorum is cautious about sparring with them these days. Graham gave the only answer he could give realistically. I’m socially conservative, he says, reassuring the few righties who might conceivably vote for Lindsey Graham for president, but I hope Jenner’s found peace and welcome his/her support. What else could he say?
Makes me wonder, though, if maybe the calculus on this question won’t change as the campaign develops. Right now there’s little upside and lots of downside for a GOP candidate who says he wants Jenner excluded from the party. But what if Santorum or Huckabee or Ben Carson or even Bobby Jindal struggles to gain traction early and finds himself slipping out of contention before Iowa? Would it be worth saying then that transgenderism is inimical to what the GOP stands for, as a way for that candidate to show righties that he’s willing to speak up against the pro-LGBT cultural tide in ways that his rivals aren’t? Also, if we’re going to put Republicans on the spot about Jenner, let’s put Hillary on the spot too with some pointed questions about the famously accepting Democratic Party. Question one: Does she welcome polygamist votes? If so, that’d be useful to know. If not, I’d be curious to know on what grounds she excludes them. Let’s get everyone on the record, huh?