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Red State
Red State
1 Jul 2023
Brittany Sheehan

NextImg:Log Cabin Republicans, Ric Grenell, and Caitlyn Jenner Condemn 'Homophobic' Pro-DeSantis Video

On Friday, a controversial video was posted on the DeSantis War Room account, that showed clips of former President Donald Trump speaking to LGB&T issues, and juxtaposing it with his main presidential primary opponent, Florida’s governor Ron DeSantis. The video has been condemned by Log Cabin Republicans, Richard “Ric” Grenell, and Caitlyn Jenner accounting for many of the most prominent LGB&T voices in the GOP.

The video, which appears to have originated from another account, included several interesting editorial choices that I will highlight, but first, you can watch it, here:

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The video opens with a spliced clip of then-candidate Trump at the National Republican Convention in 2016. In the DeSantis cut, the video shows Trump saying, “I will do everything in my power to protect our LGBTQ citizens.” But, the clip doesn’t show the entire quote or context, although the screen shows the words “ISSUE: GLOBAL TERROR.”

At the convention, Trump said:

As your president, I will do everything in my power to protect our LGBTQ citizens from the violence and oppression of a hateful foreign ideology. Believe me.

The all-Republican crowd erupted with cheers and chants.

And I have to say, as a Republican, it is so nice to hear you cheering for what I just said, thank you.

The commentators noted that the last line thanking the audience was unscripted.

Next, the video shows that the Trump campaign sold shirts that said “LGBTQ for TRUMP,” which, of course, is not unique to that community as we know that Blacks for Trump is a group, Latinos for Trump is an even bigger group, Women for Trump was likely the biggest of all. But let’s not forget Bikers for Trump, and Cops for Trump was also a slogan sold on shirts. But yeah, you could be gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender, and also pro-Trump; that was always allowed and still is today. 

Next comes a clip of Trump being asked if he would let Caitlyn Jenner use any bathroom in Trump Tower, to which he agreed. I’m not sure exactly what this proves since Trump Tower is private property. Can you imagine Trump rushing into the women’s restroom to drag Caitlyn Jenner out of there? Or sending security to make a scene? I can’t. 

Jenner, by the way, is a figure at the forefront of advocating for women’s sports. Jenner, formally known as Bruce, is a gold medalist Olympian who knows the advantages of men in competition. To help preserve women’s sports, Jenner has created a political action committee called Fairness First

Shockingly, a 2019 tweet was overlaid during the Jenner segment of the video made by then-President Trump in June, acknowledging Pride month and his diplomatic efforts on the issue of violence against gay people in other nations.

The President wrote:

As we celebrate LGBT Pride Month and recognize the outstanding contributions LGBT people have made to our great Nation, let us also stand in solidarity with the many LGBT people who live in dozens of countries worldwide that punish, imprison, or even execute individuals on the basis of their sexual orientation. My Administration has launched a global campaign to decriminalize homosexuality and invite all nations to join us in this effort!

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I’m not sure how Trump saying that we should condemn the regimes that practice imprisonment and execution of homosexuals is something that warrants criticism of him. 

The video then shows a pro-Trump drag queen and Trump saying he would let transgender people compete in Miss Universe. Then the video changes tempo and shows what appears to be Tyler the Creator, a black hip-hop artist, yelling the word “Syke!” and a graphic of DeSantis shooting lasers out of his eyeballs with the word “NO” appearing on the screen. 

Next comes the first of several clips featuring an AI-generated character known as “GigaChad” who is supposed to represent super-masculinity and has become a meme that started on Reddit.

The rest of the compilation is a bunch of mainstream headlines reacting to DeSantis signing laws in Florida. Fascinatingly, the creator of the video also chose to include one of the most mocked clips of DeSantis, where he is laughing in a manner that some people criticize as socially awkward.

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There are some Wolf of Wall Street references, a clip of the “Top Gov” ad, and a bunch of leftist pundits calling his policies “draconian,” along with other condemnations. 

And LGB&T figures in the Republican party resented the video. Former Ambassador Ric Grenell called it “undeniably homophobic.”

Just last week, California Senate Democrats walked out in protest of Grenell being honored for his contributions to the nation. This came after the Dems hosted and awarded members of the anti-Catholic drag nun group Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence on the Senate floor in early June. The Republican conference wrote a rebuke of the invitation of the group, calling it “inexcusable.”

Read More:

CA Dem Senator Roasted by Ric Grenell After Tantrum Over GOP Honoring Him During ‘Pride Month’

CA Republicans Rebuke Planned Senate Visit of Anti-Catholic Group ‘Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence’

Jenner, who was featured in the pro-DeSantis video as a figure of ire, thanked Grenell and retweeted many commentators who expressed alienation and opposition to the video. 

Log Cabin Republicans wrote a thread calling out the messaging:

Today’s message from the DeSantis campaign War Room is divisive and desperate. Republicans and other commonsense conservatives know Ron Desantis has alienated swing-state and younger voters. 

Conservatives understand that we need to protect our kids, preserve women’s sports, safeguard women’s spaces, and strengthen parental rights, but Ron DeSantis’ extreme rhetoric goes has just ventured into homophobic territory.

Desantis’ rhetoric will lose hard-fought gains in critical races across the nation. This old playbook has been tried in the past and has failed – repeatedly.

Left-wing gays have tried to hijack the equality movement by pushing their radical sex and gender policies on children while slandering anyone who disagrees with them.

Ron DeSantis and his team can’t tell the difference between commonsense gays and the radical Left gays. He, sadly, sees them all the same. His naive policy positions are dangerous and politically stupid.

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The video received countless negative reactions from social media users.

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When Trump was running for president in 2016, he addressed the Pulse Nightclub shooting in Orlando, speaking to all Americans and bringing the gay community into the fold with compassion and dignity. I am including it here as a reminder of what the campaign trail can and should reflect from conservatives, what tones have been struck in the past, and what image we should aspire to continue to reflect as the Republican brand.

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The controversy created demonstrates a refusal to strike a balance between appealing to conservative values and avoiding divisive rhetoric that discourages participation in the party, perpetuates stigmas, and alienates members. The video fails to distinguish between commonsense conservatives within the LGB&T communities and those with radical positions.

Concerns are being raised about the potential impact on critical races across swing states, and that it may drive away younger demographics. This incident shows us the need for nuanced approaches and policies that protect religious rights, preserve women’s sports, and strengthen parental rights while avoiding marginalization. 

Unfortunately, the above reflections will likely be discarded, and fully unnecessary mudslinging will continue at the expense of a modern party that cheered Trump’s 2016 words at the National Convention, invoking unscripted gratitude and reflection from our future President for how far the GOP had come to truly showcase itself as the Big Tent. Taking that sentiment and unity away from Republicans is atrophy. We’re supposed to be registering voters, not telling them they don’t belong here, remember?