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|Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC)|
One invitation has been followed by a lot of rejection for the Conservative Political Action Conference.The Family Research Council, American Family Association and Concerned Women for America are among 18 anti-gay organizations designated as hate groups last month by the Southern Poverty Law Center. The SPLC website states, Generally, the SPLC’s listings of these groups is based on their propagation of known falsehoods — claims about LGBT people that have been thoroughly discredited by scientific authorities — and repeated, groundless name-calling. Viewing homosexuality as unbiblical does not qualify organizations for listing as hate groups.
After event organizers decided to allow GOProud, a gay Republican group, to be a "participating organization" for a second straight year, social conservative organizations like the Family Research Council and Concerned Women for America decided they wouldn't be coming out. Ditto for the Heritage Foundation and the American Family Association. Now, two more leading conservatives have announced they're going to skip March's festivities.
"With leading conservatives organizations not participating this year, Senator [Jim] DeMint will not be attending. He hopes to attend a unified CPAC next year," a spokesman for the South Carolina Republican told CNN.
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie also declined an invite, but his spokesman wouldn't elaborate. "I can only tell you that the governor receives hundreds of speaking and appearance invitations every month, many of which are declined for a number of reasons," Michael Drewniak told The Star-Ledger via e-mail.
DeMint was listed as an invited speaker on the CPAC website, which currently has confirmations from Haley Barbour, Newt Gingrich, Andrew Breitbart, Ann Coulter, Liz Cheney, Mitch McConnell, and a number of other Governors, Senators and U.S. Representatives.