Sarah Palin, the former governor of Alaska, is still mum on her 2012 intentions, but her support of a gay conservative group's inclusion at the national Conservative Political Action Conference has led many to wonder whether she has tacked to the center on gay rights.
ABC News reports that several conservative groups that headed to this week's CPAC are uncomfortable with the inclusion of one other "right-leaning" group, GOProud, which advocates on behalf of "gays and their allies" for federal policy promoting "a traditional conservative agenda that emphasizes limited government, individual liberty, free markets and a confident foreign policy." Some groups are so uncomfortable -- including the Heritage Foundation and the Families Resource Council -- that they have decided to boycott the convention.
Palin has for the fourth year in a row declined an invitation to CPAC. She told the Christian Broadcasting Network that it was a "scheduling conflict" that prevented her appearance, not GOProud's presence at the convention. And she went one step further, telling CBN that conference attendees should not so quickly dismiss the opportunity to provide a full spectrum of conservatism. News website POLITICO reports Palin alluded to the controversy that GOProud's inclusion at the conference had caused for conservatives.
"Should the GOP, should conservatives not reach out to others, not participate in events and forums that... maybe we don't personally agree with? And I say no... I look at participation in an event like CPAC or any other event in that same vein as the more information that people have the better," Palin told CBN.
Palin has mostly left her support or opposition to gay rights "open to interpretation." Last month, Palin re-tweeted a gay conservative's post that was critical of the GOP's ardent opposition to the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," calling it "hypocrisy."
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