BISMARCK, ND — The North Dakota Republican Party recently passed a horrific anti-LGBTQ+ platform. While many members of the party have denounced it, few have stepped forward to say they support the initiative that included language repeating harmful and bigoted rhetoric.
After the resolution passed, no Republicans spoke up before news broke in the Fargo Forum. The discriminatory message has been included in the party platform since 2016. It has been removed from the party’s website.
“Many LGBT practices are unhealthy and dangerous, sometimes endangering or shortening life and sometimes infecting society at large,” the platform reads.
North Dakota Republicans failed to step forward to eliminate the language before the resolution passed.
“A Burgum spokesman did not respond to a request for comment on whether the governor or his staff read the platform before voting on it and how Resolution 31 ended up in it,” said the story in the Huffington Post this weekend.
House Minority Leader Josh Boschee, the first openly gay lawmaker in North Dakota tweeted:
Despite expressing outrage, Gov. Doug Burgum, who is one of the NDGOP’s largest donors, has failed to refuse financial support to candidates and districts that are anti-LGBTQ+.
“They made a positive step by denouncing this language, but any dollar spent supporting a candidate who holds these hateful views would completely invalidate their pearl clutching. North Dakotans and LGBTQ+ individuals deserve more than words to know their rights are protected and their lives valued, and we’re calling on the governor and executive committee to show they mean what they say,” said Dem-NPL Chairwoman Kylie Oversen.
The platform received wide denunciation across the state of North Dakota, including op-eds from a broad coalition of LGBTQ+ advocates and other groups.
“How could Governor Burgum, the most powerful elected official in the state, not denounce this before it passed? Where were Senators Cramer and Hoeven, State Senator Wardner and State Representative Pollert, and the many other dozens of Republican elected officials? How could they not know about a resolution that contained such controversial, and cruel, language? What message does this send to our LGBTQ+ and Two Spirit youth?” Erin Pringle of Dakota OutRight and Barry Nelson of North Dakota Human Rights Coalition wrote in the op-ed.
Seventeen members of the NDGOP wrote a letter saying they support the resolution as written.
“Let us be very clear. This Resolution is not an expression of bigotry, and we reject any and all claims that attempt to mischaracterize it as such,” the letter reads.