S.E. Cupp, Huntsman daughters join new group of young conservatives for the ‘Freedom to Marry’

Matt K. Lewis Senior Contributor
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MSNBC co-host S.E. Cupp and CNN contributor Will Cain have joined a growing list of young center-right opinion leaders to sign on to Young Conservatives for the Freedom to Marry, a leading pro-same-sex marriage group.

The group is announcing 20 new members to its leadership committee today, including the “Huntsman daughters.” And to mark the occasion, Meghan McCain, and Margaret Hoover — along with Abby, Liddy, and Mary Anne Huntsman — will join other Young Conservatives at a reception in Washington, D.C. on Monday.

Additionally, Tyler Deaton, who led the successful legislative effort backed by a majority of Republicans to keep same-sex marriage on the books in New Hampshire, was announced as the group’s campaign manager.

Eduardo J. Lopez-Reyes, national vice chairman of the Republican Liberty Caucus, James Owens, president of the Oregon Log Cabin Republicans, and Jake Wagner, Chairman of the New Hampshire Federation of College Republicans, are also coming on board.

A number of campaign veterans from the 2012 and 2008 presidential cycles will also join the committee. They include Nathan Parsons of Allegiance Strategies, former RNC online communications director and former Rick Perry strategist Liz Mair, Matt David, Jon Huntsman’s former campaign manager and a former McCain 2008 staffer, and Crystal Benton, David Welch, and Marco Nunez, who also served on McCain’s 2008 campaign.

“By giving same-sex couples the freedom to marry, we are not only allowing millions of people to pursue their dreams and have couples’ deep commitment recognized by the entity to which they pay taxes and which administers the court system,” said Mair, “we are also giving them the opportunity to build more stable, durable relationships — something that I personally believe will be beneficial to society, as a whole.”

The 20 new committee members will join existing Young Conservatives including Margaret Hoover, Meghan McCain and Craig Stowell, the “star” of a recent ad released in support of same-sex marriage and targeting Republicans.

In recent weeks, a number of prominent Republicans have also publicly announced their support for same-sex marriage by signing an amicus brief opposing California’s Proposition 8. Signers of that brief included former solicitor general Ted Olson, former RNC chairman Ken Mehlman, Reps. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Richard Hanna, and Clint Eastwood.

Freedom to Marry released polling last week, showing broad support for same-sex marriage among Republicans under age 30.

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Matt K. Lewis