For Immediate Release
February 26, 2014 
Contact: Dave McCulloch

Fund Supporting Gay Republican Congressional Candidates Raises Over $250,000 in 60 Days
Carl DeMaio and Richard Tisei Form Joint Fundraising Committee

Washington, DC - Openly gay Congressional Candidates Carl DeMaio (CA-52) and Richard Tisei (MA-6) have formed a joint fundraising committee called the Equality Leadership Fund to support their historic bids for U.S. Congress - and the initial tally of financial support should send a strong message to the Republican Party and establishment LGBT groups alike.

The Equality Leadership Fund began fundraising efforts November 1, 2013 and by December 31, 2013 the fund had collected an impressive $254,625 from a broad range of donors. Proceeds are distributed evenly between Tisei and DeMaio to support their campaigns for Congress.

"The response has been outstanding - and we see support for the Equality Leadership Fund as sending a clear message that donors want to see the Republican Party become more inclusive," said DeMaio and Tisei in a joint statement.

Political strategist Ric Grenell noted that the creation of the fund reflects the challenging environment for gay Republicans within the LGBT community itself.

"Establishment LGBT groups have shown no interest in genuinely supporting gay Republicans, so DeMaio and Tisei were smart to form their own fundraising vehicle," Grenell noted. Only one LGBT organization - Log Cabin Republicans - have contributed to the fund thus far.

Reflecting a goal of changing the political dynamics within the LGBT community, both Tisei and DeMaio are hopeful that the Equality Leadership Fund will build a foundation for other gay Republicans to use in their campaigns for office.

The Equality Leadership Fund will hold two fundraisers for DeMaio and Tisei in the upcoming weeks - one in Miami on March 10 and one in Washington, D.C. on March 11.