As conservative politicos gathered in Palm Beach County, the backlash over a controversial video promoted by Gov. Ron DeSantis’ presidential campaign carried on.
Deemed homophobic by the Log Cabin Republicans, the video attacked former President Donald Trump for being too cozy with the LGBTQ community.
For David Leatherwood, it was personal. Leatherwood, a gay conservative activist, said the video was an insult to years of hard work cultivating space for gays and lesbians within the Republican Party.
Ultimately, after heavy criticism, the video disappeared from Twitter. DeSantis refused to condemn it, telling reporters the topic was “totally fair game.”
Leatherwood saw it differently, and when the head of Gays Against Groomers (GAG) came to DeSantis’ defense, that was enough. He resigned from the board of directors of GAG, a group known for its adamant opposition to gender-affirming care for minors and all-ages drag shows.
Despite the split, Leatherwood said he is still friends with GAG founder and president, Jaimee Michell.
“We’re really good friends, and I’m not going to cancel her as my friend just because she has different political opinions,” Leatherwood said. “However, I do think it reached a certain point where everything kind of exploded and as a leader of a nonprofit organization where you are so explicitly political it has a risk of tainting the mission.”