This makes Grenell the highest ranking gay official ever in GOP administration.
On Thursday, the United States Senate confirmed openly gay Richard Grenell (R) as Ambassador to Germany. The 56-42 vote comes after months of criticism from the Democratic party who accused him of being a misogynist and therefore undeserving of the high-ranking ambassador position.
Oregon Sen. Jeff Merkley delayed Grenell's appointment in March because of what he felt were “lengthy track record of tweets attacking both prominent Democratic and prominent Republican women.”.
These barbs were countered by Republicans who accused Democrats of stalling the appointment under the "cloture" rules even though they knew the votes would land in his favor.
Former openly gay Councilmember and Republican mayoral candidate Carl DeMaio released a statement Thursday congratulating Grenell for this historic appointment.
"Ric not only is eminently qualified as a national security and foreign policy expert but he will be an exceptional role model as a high-ranking LGBT member of this administration," said DeMaio. "I’m outraged that some LGBT organizations failed to support Ric’s nomination simply because he is a Republican."
DeMaio added: "In the end, dozens of Democratic senators voted against Ric Grenell solely because he happened to be gay and Republican – a mortal sin in their worldview. LGBT leaders preach tolerance and diversity, but they refuse to allow diversity of political thought within their own community. Worse, LGBT leaders shun bipartisanship in favor of partisan division which in no way serves the long-term interests of the LGBT community as a whole. They should be supporting and celebrating Ric Grenell instead of thwarting his progress.”
This appointment is a historic one. Grenell is only the second LGBT Republican ambassador to be appointed to the role by a president. The first was Michael Guest who became Ambassador to Romania in 2001 under the Bush administration.
Grenell was the spokesperson for the United States UN Ambassador from 2001 to 2008. Then in 2012, he resigned his position on Mitt Romney's presidential campaign partly due to conservative religious groups who opposed his support of same-sex marriage.
City Commissioner and Mayor of Hillcrest Nicole Murray Ramirez says he talked to Grenell just after hearing about his confirmation, saying it was long overdue.
"I have known Ric since his days on Mayor Susan Golding’s staff,” stated Murray Ramirez. “He is the most qualified nominee to become an Ambassador from our community. I talked to him today and let him know how proud of him I am and wished him and his husband the best as they move to Germany to represent our great nation."
As a matter of full disclosure, Hale Media Publisher Johnathan Hale is married to Carl DeMaio.