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Republican group separates gun raffle from King, Lincoln dinner

Jan. 21, 2014 at 2:52 PM

PORTLAND, Ore., Jan. 21 (UPI) -- An Oregon county's wing of the Republican Party apologized for the announcement of a gun raffle to honor Martin Luther King and Abraham Lincoln.

The Multnomah County Republican Party apologized in a news release Monday after earlier being targeted by criticism from across the nation for announcing a Feb. 15 dinner honoring King and Lincoln, who were both felled by gun-wielding assassins, would include a gun raffle, the (Portland) Oregonian reported Tuesday.

"In our enthusiasm for celebrating Martin Luther King and Abraham Lincoln and the U.S. Constitution, our Multnomah Republican Party issued a press release that was unfortunately easily misunderstood. The GOP stands for individual liberty, lower taxes, smaller government and individual responsibility. We apologize if people were hurt by the message being marred by insufficient wording and/or cynical misinterpretations by those who disagree with us politically. We will certainly endeavor to communicate more clearly in the future, and learn and grow from this experience," the news release read.

Jeff Reynolds, chairman of the county Republican Party, said the gun raffle would be separated from the Feb. 15 dinner. He said the party will find a new venue for the event after the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral said Sunday it was canceling an agreement to host the dinner.

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