This weekend, the Nevada Republican Party voted to strip opposition to same-sex marriage and abortion from its party platform. Previously, the platform had included the beliefs that marriage should be “between a man and a woman” and described the party as pro-life/against abortion, but this year, the both planks were left out entirely. According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, this was an attempt to make the party more inclusive:
Republicans who sat on the platform committee said they decided not to deal with social issues this year because the U.S. Supreme Court and lower courts have weighed in and it doesn’t make sense for the party of “personal freedom” to have the government or the political party get involved in people’s personal lives.
“The issue was how can we back out of people’s personal lives,” said Dave Hockaday of Lyon County, who sat on the platform committee. “We need to focus on issues where we can have an impact.”
Nevada’s ban on same-sex marriage is currently being weighed by the Ninth Circuit, which recently ruled that sexual orientation warrants extra protection (what’s known as heightened scrutiny) under the Constitution’s 14th Amendment. Because of this new precedent, state Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto (D) announced that the state would no longer defend the ban, a decision that Gov. Brian Sandoval (R) accepted despite his personal opposition to same-sex marriage. The conservative group continuing to argue in favor of the state’s discriminatory laws has described marriage equality as comparable to white supremacy.