Former Rep. Jim Kolbe (R-AZ), who served in Congress from 1985 to 2007 and came out of the closet in 1996, told ThinkProgress in an interview Wednesday that he thinks his party will drop the anti-gay planks when it holds its 2016 convention. “This is a purely generational issue,” Kolbe argued. “I would predict four years from now, the gay issue will not be mentioned on the party platform. It’s just going to disappear as an issue.”
KOLBE: The second thing I would say is that I think that this is a purely generational issue. It’s going to go away. In fact I would predict four years from now, the gay issue will not be mentioned on the party platform. It’s just going to disappear as an issue. Just as the no gays in the military disappeared this year from the party platform. That issue is settled now as far as the country is concerned. So I think this issue is settled, may not be in four years, but I’m predicting that it probably would be dropped from the platform in five years.
For Kolbe’s prediction to come true, it would require a massive shift among Republican attitudes towards LGBT rights. Due to the influence of social conservatives like Tony Perkins, this year’s Republican platform is “as anti-LGBT as ever,” according to ThinkProgress LGBT editor Zack Ford. Even the Log Cabin Republicans called the platform, which rejects recognition of both marriage equality and civil unions, “bad with a capital ‘B.’”