The D.C. LGBTQ GOP group Log Cabin Republicans plans to increase its involvement in local and national politics this year after increasing its membership by 25 percent in 2020. And after its March 20 through 22 online election of officers, its president, Adam Savit won reelection unopposed.
Also winning reelection unopposed were Vice President Cody Gaffney, Treasurer Chaim Starkey, and at-large board member Marc Dean. Newly elected officers include Secretary Brady Mickelsen and at-large board members Andrew Desser, Andrew Mink and Jarrod Rodriquez.
Savit said this year the organization will be “intimately involved” with the D.C. Republican Committee, the local party’s governing body, which has been supportive of LGBTQ+ rights and whose recently elected chair, Patrick Mara, has been a longtime LGBTQ+ rights supporter. Savit noted that D.C. Log Cabin’s secretary, Brady Mickelsen, is serving as the DCRC’s Ward 4 chair and the group’s board member, Andrew Desser, is the committee’s Ward 1 chair. Savit said among D.C. LCR’s goals is to have LGBTQ+ Republicans run for elective office in the upcoming D.C. election cycle.
“This year we are super energized to build our membership, educate the public and integrate as never before with our dozens of chapters around the country and our national organization to influence the conversation leading up to 2022,” Savit said. “We added about 25 percent to our membership rolls over the past 12 months, as people were isolated during COVID and alienated due to political oppression and seeking camaraderie.”
Savit declined to provide background information on the newly elected officers on grounds that they could be subjected to negative repercussions due to hostility toward conservatives. The group came under fire from LGBTQ+ activists last year when it endorsed Donald Trump for reelection.
“I regret that the current political climate has made it dangerous for conservatives to be as public about our activities as we were able to be in the past,” he said. “Due to national and local trends of blacklisting and ‘cancellation,’ our leaders and members fear negative repercussions in employment and social spheres, and in some cases physical safety, and I am respecting their concerns.”
He noted that despite the criticism the national Log Cabin Republicans and its local chapters received for supporting Trump, LGBTQ voter support for Trump increased by 14 percentage points percent since 2016, according to national polling data.
“We plan to double that again in 2022 and 2024,” Savit said.
Historically, with an overwhelmingly Democratic D.C. electorate, Log Cabin and its GOP allies have seen local Republican candidates lose virtually all elections they have run in for the past 20 years or longer.
This article originally appeared in the Washington Blade and is made available in partnership with the National LGBT Media Association.