The same week that Democrats advanced the most progressive platform in the party’s history, Republicans crafted a platform that effectively rejects the 21st century.
Tasked with the job of drafting a platform to bring the GOP into the 21st Century, delegates on the Republican platform committee produced a platform that faces resolutely backwards, and reaffirms the party’ staunchly conservative positions on issues where it’s fought losing battles in recent years.
Here are a few of the wackier items from the fevered brains of right-wingers who huddled in downtown Cleveland, Ohio, to hammer out the platform this week, in advance of the GOP convention.
- Supreme Court be damned. The GOP platform backs a constitutional amendment to overturn the 2015 decision legalizing same-sex marriage nationwide. This was “softened,” from a previous stance calling for a constitutional amendment defining marriage as between a man and a woman.
- Meanwhile, the committee defeated an amendment stating that the best place for a child to grow up was “a loving and stable home,” in favor of language that reads “a traditional two-parent household” is the best place to raise a child.
- Forget the Zika virus. Forget guns, which kill more than 30,000 Americans each year. The GOP platform declare internet pornography a “public health crisis,” on the grounds that it is “destroying the lives of millions.” The platform dedicates the party to fighting this “public menace.”
- Remember the widely debunked gay “conversion therapy” that’s even been banned in some states? It’s back. In language drafted by Family Research Council head Tony Perkins, the GOP platform now supports the right of parties to force their LGBT kids into conversion therapy.
- Naturally, the GOP platform opposes legalized abortion, with no exceptions for rape or incest.
- Along the same lines, the GOP platform embraces the proposed Parental Rights Amendment to the Constitution, which would allow parents to keep their children unvaccinated, uneducated, and beaten without state intervention.
- Instead of leaving the issue to the states, the GOP platform calls for legislation to keep transgender people from using public restrooms that align with their gender identity, just like over 200 bills introduced in state legislatures nationwide. The city of Cleveland, Ohio, which is hosting the GOP convention just voted to ban the anti-transgender discrimination the GOP platform embraces.
- The GOP platform even includes a “Cliven Bundy plank,” that proposes to get rid of national parks and national forests, and calls of the return of all federally controlled lands to the states.
- The platform adopted a plan encouraging the teaching of the Bible in public schools, which was supported by Family Research Council president Tony Perkins.
- Never mind that coal produced far more pollution than any other source of electricity. The GOP platform effectively declares all coal “an affordable, abundant, and increasingly clean domestic energy resource.” Just like that, all coal is clean, by magically declaring it so.
- The new Republican platform call for the real of laws prohibiting political organizing by churches. The law, adopted in 1954, prohibits tax-exempt organizations from endorsing political candidates.
- The platform commits the GOP to fighting magnetic impulse attacks.