January 24, 2014 at 1:23 pm EDT | by Chris Johnson
RNC chair calls on anti-gay committee member to resign
Reince Priebus, Rebpublican National Committee, RNC, Republican Party, GOP, Republican National Convention, gay news, Washington Blade

RNC Chairman Reince Priebus has asked for the resignation of Dave Agema (Washington Blade file photo by Michael Key).

Republican National Committee chair Reince Preibus has asked the Michigan Republican who has taken fire from members of his own party for anti-gay remarks to resign his position from the RNC.

Sean Spicer, an RNC spokesperson, tweeted on the second day of the RNC winter meeting in D.C. that Preibus as well as Michigan Republican Chair Bobby Schostak asked for the resignation of RNC committee member Dave Agema.

Kirsten Kukowski, another RNC spokesperson, confirmed the tweet for the Washington Blade, saying “For the good of the party we believe Dave Agema should resign.”

According to the Detroit Free Press, Priebus and Schostak called for Agema to step down shortly after Priebus spoke to the RNC on Friday at the winter meeting about the need to expand the party’s base of voters.

Gregory Angelo, executive director of the National Log Cabin Republicans, said the call from the party’s top leader demonstrates it’s time for Agema to resign.

“The writing is on the wall — it has been since Log Cabin Republicans called for Mr. Agema to step down in December,” Angelo said. “Agema’s already lost all credibility, but he can still maintain some shred of decency by doing the right thing and heeding the galvanized calls of GOP leadership to resign so we can forge ahead and focus on winning.”

Over the course of the past year, Agema has made a series of anti-gay comments that have landed him in hot water with gay Republicans and GOP leaders at the state and national level.

In postings via Facebook, he’s said Russia’s controversial anti-gay propaganda law is “common sense” and copied an article saying gay people are sexually promiscuous, rife with sexually transmitted diseases and responsible for the majority of murders in the country.

During a reception for Republicans in Michigan, Agema also reportedly said Agema reportedly said he’s seen gay people working for American Airlines falsely claim to have HIV-infected partners to obtain spousal health coverage. Agema also sponsored a resolution approved by the RNC in April reaffirming the party’s opposition to same-sex marriage.

But Agema’s comments aren’t limited to anti-gay views. Agema also posted an old online attack piece questioning whether Muslims have contributed anything positive to American society.

Among those calling for Agema to resign are the National Log Cabin Republicans, former Michigan Republican Party chair Betsy Devos as well as Reps. Candace Miller (R-Mich.), Justin Amash (R-Mich.), Fred Upton (R-Mich.) and Dave Camp. Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder (R) also criticized Agema.

Amid this controversy, Agema was a no-show at the RNC winter meeting and sent in his place former RNC member Chuck Yob.

Agema didn’t immediately respond to the Washington Blade’s request to comment on the latest call for his resignation from Preibus and the chair of the Michigan Republican party.

Dennis Lennox, a Republican precinct delegate in Grand Traverse County in Michigan who’s been vocal in calling for Agema’s ouster, said Agema should take the advice of Republican leaders and resign his post.

“Voices at every level of the Republican Party have made it clear that Dave Agema does not speak for our Republican Party,” Lennox said. “It is time for him to listen to the people he was elected to represent and resign.”

Chris Johnson is Chief Political & White House Reporter for the Washington Blade. Johnson attends the daily White House press briefings and is a member of the White House Correspondents' Association. Follow Chris

  • As a Democrat, I am grateful for party affiliation opponents like Jimmy LaSalvia, LCR and GOProud members, Ted Olson, Susan Collins, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, etc., etc.– Republicans and Independents of conscience whose advocacy and/or acts of political courage persistently advance the cause of LGBT equality, too. It all helps.

  • The arsonist loves fire. they were born this way
    But they MUST not burn all things and have control over there desire.

    3-6% Abomination of life.
    The painful scar of realizing your gay as you come of knowing age (Around 12) will carry deep in your mind forever.

    It does,and it might not,hurt at first. But time is against you. It will catch up with you and eat you up inside.It’s like a direct hit to your sternum.An ongoing War within you as you deal with the rest of the 96%.

    How long can you last?
    Brainwashed into believing your own lies. Telling yourself over and over it’s O.K. You lie to yourself when you know deep within somrthings WRONG.

    Make it quick.Allow yourself to end. End your torment. You don’t need this pain. People will understand and you will finally be at REST.

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