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Hoosier conservatives split on state party's platform change

SOUTH BEND, Ind. — some Hoosier conservatives aren’t seeing eye-to-eye on the state party’s changing party platform.

Indiana’s 2018 Republican Convention kicks off at the Ford Center Friday and the biggest contentious vote for the delegation could be on the party’s proposed stance on marriage.

“We’re seeing this in state after state where Republican parties are wrestling with the fact that federal law as well as generally accepted standards are changing,” said Rick Klein, ABC News political director. “And often these platforms are the last to catch up.”

This week, the committee in charge of Indiana GOP’s messaging put out a draft of the 2018 platform with a more open-ended interpretation of what constitutes a Hoosier family.

Specifically, it removed a line that stated marriage is between a man and a woman.

That change didn’t sit well quite a few conservatives including Congressman Todd Rokita.

“I believe that all families from all backgrounds deserve dignity and respect,” Rokita said in a statement to ABC 57 News. “I also believe that marriage is a sacrament - a covenant between a man and a woman.”

He says he supports the 2016 platform language that included that distinction.

However the party’s state chair says this change reflects changing makeup of homes across the state.

“[The 2018 platform] highlighted, as a first in a list of many, traditional families with a mother and a father,” he said in a statement to ABC 57 News. “It also highlighted the strength of the family unit and supporting any family structure that is raising Hoosier kids in a loving and caring environment that will help them to become productive members of our society.”

“I think you’re seeing some generational changes and a lot of that is driven by realities and I think the party, like a lot of state parties, is having a hard time adjusting to that and you’re seeing those growing pains,” said Klein.

The delegation will vote to approve the new platform of keep the 2016 platform on Saturday.

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