Rick Santorum and the GOP's transgender tolerance movement

Santorum was taking essentially a hate-the-sin, love-the-sinner approach, something any conservative could say about gay rights while remaining opposed to gay marriage or even gay adoption. Yet it was a man-bites-dog kind of statement to hear from one of the Republican Party’s leading culture warriors. South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham, a social conservative on most issues, was even more welcoming to Jenner.

“What he is going through, I can’t imagine or relate to, but I know from just the look and the sound and the voice that it must have been hell,” Graham told Bloomberg. “We’ve got an opportunity here to grow the party, and that doesn’t mean abandoning the basic principles. I’m looking for consensus. I’m looking for people that would help me take the country in a new direction. That group is going to have to be more diverse.”

Did Graham think that Jenner really was born to be a woman? “I can only say that it is clear he is a tortured soul,” Graham said. “If he can find relief, and a better life, god bless.”

Delegates to the convention, a gathering of one of America’s most conservative state parties, were generally unmoved by questions about Jenner. They did not endorse him; they were fine sharing a country with him.