California Republican Party vice-chairman Greg Gandrud has warned that conservatives and Tea Party Republicans are set to go after recently passed protections for transgender students as an issue to wedge state Democrats on.
State Republicans voted to back the campaign to repeal California’s AB 1266 law, ensuring transgender students are treated as their preferred gender in school activities, at their state convention in Anaheim over the weekend.
The resolution endorsed the Privacy For All Students campaign which is working with the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) to put the repeal of AB 1266 to a referendum via a ballot initiative.
NOM were responsible for the banning of same-sex marriage in California via the Prop 8 ballot initiative in 2008.
Gandrud told Buzzfeed that while a majority at the convention voted for the resolution, many others did not.
‘There were a lot of people who voted no, like myself, Log Cabin Republicans, and our straight allies, Gandrud said.
‘I am openly gay, and I want to build the party so that we can build up some authority on other issues like keeping taxes low and fixing roads and making sure we have reliable drinking water in California.’
Gandrud said that some in the party were using the campaign for a referendum on AB 1266 in the hopes of motivating political donors.
‘Some people are very emotional about it,’ Gandrud said.
‘They are the same people who opposed marriage equality and they are just conservative on social issues. They are just running out of issues and they could raise a lot of money on those issues and they had to find a new bogeyman and that is transgender kids.’
The Privacy For All Students must gather 505,000 signatures by November 10 to put the issue on the ballot and are heavily targeting non-English speaking background communities but LGBT rights proponents are hopeful that they will fail to meet that goal.