Montana’s Republican Party has dropped a longtime plank in its platform demanding that the state recognize a law banning homosexual activity.
The state GOP had officially declared that “We support the clear will of the people of Montana expressed by legislation to keep homosexual acts illegal,” language that was initially included in 1997 after a state court struck down an existing ban on gay sex. All such state laws were invalidated in 2003 in the Supreme Court case Lawrence v. Texas.
The issue was dropped from the “crime” section of the platform over the weekend at the Republican state convention after the party’s crime subcommittee decided to remove it.
“The folks on the crime committee told me they had a good debate about it,” he said. “I wasn’t there myself.”
But it wasn’t entirely clear why the plank was removed. At least some Republican legislators had openly decried its inclusion as an embarrassment. But Montana GOP Executive Director Bowen Greenwood told TPM that his only direction to party committee chairs was to gut extraneous items from the platform in order to make it shorter and more accessible.