Voice for Equality: Steve Schmidt

Steve Schmidt is an American campaign strategist and public relations worker for the U.S. Republican Party. He specializes in political "message development and strategy." Schmidt was the senior campaign strategist and advisor to the 2008 presidential campaign of Senator John McCain. Early in his career, Schmidt was communications director of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce. In 2001, he was the spokesman of the National Republican Congressional Committee, becoming the Communications Director by 2002. He left the NRCC in early 2003 to work for the lobbying firm Direct Impact Company. Schmidt joined the Bush administration as a Deputy Assistant to the President and Counselor to Vice President Dick Cheney. In 2004, he was a member of the senior strategic planning group, led by White House adviser Karl Rove, that ran President George W. Bush's re-election campaign; Schmidt oversaw the reelection "war room." In 2005 and 2006, he was the White House strategist in charge of the U.S. Supreme Court nominations of Samuel A. Alito and Chief Justice John Roberts. Learn more here.

On April 17, 2009, Steve Schmidt addressed a meeting of the Log Cabin Republicans, stating his support for marriage equality and saying the Republican party needed to embrace it:
I doubt voters under thirty will abandon social attributes that distinguish them from older voters; among them, a greater acceptance of people who find happiness in relationships with members of the same sex. And I believe Republicans should re-examine the extent to which we are being defined by positions on issues that I don’t believe are among our core values, and that put us at odds with what I expect will become over time, if not a consensus view, then the view of a substantial majority of voters...It cannot be argued that marriage between people of the same sex is un-American or threatens the rights of others. On the contrary, it seems to me that denying two consenting adults of the same sex the right to form a lawful union that is protected and respected by the state denies them two of the most basic natural rights affirmed in the preamble of our Declaration of Independence – liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. That, I believe, gives the argument of same sex marriage proponents its moral force...In closing, I’ll return to our national creed, what Lincoln called the inestimable jewel of American history, and offer my respect for and urge my fellow Republicans to respect every human being’s rights to liberty and the pursuit of happiness as much as they cherish their own.
Schmidt also spoke of his lesbian sister and her partner, saying "...they are an important part of my life and our children's life. I admire your group [Log Cabin Republicans] and your organization and I encourage you to keep fighting for what you believe in because the day is going to come." [Link]

Freedom to Marry salutes Steve Schmidt as another Republican Voice for Equality! Learn about other Voices for Equality here.

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