Republicans in New Hampshire are hoping to force their representative to the national party to either resign or to stop expressing her personal opinions after she signed a letter supporting same-sex marriage.
The Sentinel Source reported on Wednesday that New Hampshire House Rep. James W. McConnell (R) had drafted a resolution calling on Republican National Committeewoman Juliana Bergeron to step down over because she signed an amicus brief in the same-sex marriage case that is currently being heard by the U.S. Supreme Court.
Although marriage equality is settled law in New Hampshire, McConnell argued that Bergeron should abide by language added to the state party platform last year that says marriage is “between one man and one woman as ordained by God.”
“When you’re up there standing before a big crowd on behalf of the Republican Party of New Hampshire, the truth of the matter is that it’s your position to represent the party,” McConnell insisted. “She was sent to Washington to represent the party and support the party platform… She can’t go down there with her own agenda.”
Republican state Rep. Anne Cartwright suggested that Bergeron had jeopardized the “religious freedom” of Christians.
“I explained to her that my position was, and is, that our party is a coalition of groups,” Cartwright said. “Socially conservative is one of our groups, and she knifed them in the back.”
“We’re not going to win elections by alienating a very large segment of our Republican Party,” she opined.
McConnell’s resolution calling for Bergeron’s resignation was introduced on Saturday at the Cheshire County committee meeting.
“In those cases where she doesn’t personally agree with the New Hampshire Republican Party platform, she has a choice,” the resolution reads. “Either avoid discussion of the issue or resign.”
According to the resolution, supporting same-sex marriage “betrays the trust” that Bergeron “promised to deserve.”
McConnell admitted that he didn’t expect Bergeron to resign, but he said that he hoped that calling attention to the issue would damage her enough that someone else would be elected to the position next year.
“I want to see a credible woman run,” he insisted. “I want to encourage some of them that there is a real dissatisfaction with Juliana.”