We just spoke to Bryan Fischer, the director of issue analysis at the American Family Association, for his reaction on the news of Mitt Romney’s openly gay spokesman Richard Grenell resigning amid pressure from conservatives. He said he was “happy” that the Romney campaign had done “the right thing.”
“I think it’s probably going to be a long time before Gov. Romney hires another homosexual activist to a prominent position in his campaign,” Fischer said.
“And that’s good news if you’re in the pro-family community.”
Fischer has been by far the most publicly outspoken pro-family activist on the matter, saying Romney hiring Grenell was like telling the pro-family community to “drop dead” and suggesting that Grenell’s sexuality was even more important in light of the Secret Service scandal.
But he said he was a little surprised. He said that he and two other members of the “pro-family” community — the Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins and Gary Bauer of American Values — were the only three he knew of who publicly expressed their displeasure.
“I’ve had no contact with the Romney campaign. I have not made an effort to reach out to them. They have not made an effort to reach out to me,” he said.
“I’m not aware of others that have expressed public criticism of the hire,” he added. “That’s why it surprised me to hear Grenell talk about how much pressure he was under. I don’t know where that was coming from, and I’m not even sure that’s true.”
The Romney campaign said in a statement announcing the resignation that Romney had tried to convince Grenell to stay.
“We wanted him to stay because he had superior qualifications for the position he was hired to fill,” the statement read, in part.
Fischer said he doesn’t expect it to hurt the Romney campaign’s standing with the “pro-family” and evangelical voting bloc, both of which are crucial support blocs.
“I think it improves his chances that evangelicals will support him,” Fischer said. “Gov. Romney strikes me as a politician that will do the right thing if it’s politically expedient for him to do it. That’s sort of the challenge before the pro-family community — make it politically expedient for Gov. Romney to do as many right things as possible.”
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