A group of young conservatives urged the platform-drafting committee for the Republican National Committee to endorse marriage equality in a letter sent earlier this week.
Young Conservatives for the Freedom to Marry, which is under the umbrella of the national organization Freedom to Marry, wrote that if the Republicans "truly believe in family values, then we must value all families."
Signed by the leadership committee of the organization, the letter was addressed to Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, who is chairing the committee tasked with drafting the Republican Party's national platform.
Earlier this month McDonnell denied a lesbian veteran the opportunity to testify before the committee in favor of marriage equality before Republicans convene in Tampa, Fla., for their national convention Aug. 27 to 30. He did, however, encourage her to submit her suggestions online.
Democrats have already taken the historic step of including support for marriage equality as part of their national platform, which will be voted on by delegates at the Democratic National Convention in September.
Young Conservatives for the Freedom to Marry point out in their letter to McDonnell that support for marriage equality among younger generations is shifting toward a majority. According to a May Washington Post/ABC News poll, 46 percent of Republicans ages 18 to 44 support marriage equality, with 46 percent opposed. The same poll found that 53 percent of Americans support the right of gay couples to wed, compared to 39 percent opposed.
Despite these margins, few believe the Republican Party will endorse gay nuptials this election year, particularly now that the Republican presidential ticket has been confirmed.
Mitt Romney selected Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan as his running mate last weekend, enforcing anti-gay positions that include support for amending the Constitution to outlaw same-sex marriage.
Facing that reality, another group is urging the country's largest group of gay Republicans to abstain from endorsing Romney for president.
"Mitt Gets Worse," a project organized by American Bridge 21st Century and Courage Campaign Super PAC, has taken aim at Romney's record on gay rights and his "extreme anti-LGBT agenda" since its launch in July.
In a letter sent to Executive Director R. Clarke Copper and the board of directors for Log Cabin Republicans, David Brock of American Bridge 21st Century and Rick Jacobs of Courage Campaign Super PAC urged the group of gay Republicans to withhold their endorsement for Romney.
Citing Log Cabin Republicans' decision to not endorse George W. Bush in 2004 by a 22-2 margin, Brock and Jacobs write, "We believe Mitt Romney’s record shows there is little daylight between him and George W. Bush when it comes to our rights — indeed, Mitt may actually be worse, pledging to undo so much of the progress our community has made — Republicans, Democrats and independents alike. As a community, we cannot afford to take that risk."
The letter was delivered with a petition signed by more than 15,000 people hoping to influence the group's endorsement.
Responding to the letter, Cooper said the petition would have no impact on the group's internal deliberations.
"George Soros-funded petitions from leftists such as Courage Campaign or the Stonewall Democrats do not factor into the Log Cabin Republicans endorsement process. They can keep sending them right into our spam filter," Cooper wrote in statement provided to Metro Weekly. "From securing Don't Ask Don't Tell repeal to winning votes for marriage in New York, Log Cabin Republicans have been successful in our strategy of gaining support from Republican lawmakers whose offices these petitioners couldn't find with a GPS."
We will continue our work for a stronger, more inclusive GOP without regard for their 'advice,'" Cooper concluded.
Log Cabin Republicans are expected to issue their endorsement in the presidential race and various congressional races on a rolling basis spanning from August to October.