The tri-state group called Tuesday for a month-long “BuyCott” of the fast food restaurant.
Chick-fil-A is at the center of a firestorm over recent comments by company president Dan Cathy backing “the biblical definition of a family” and supporting traditional marriage.
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“We believe thousands of our members and friends will show their support for Chick-fil-A by dining at Chick-fil-A restaurants tomorrow and throughout the month of August,” said Tea Party Association President, Teri Adams.
Adams’ organization is the largest independent Tea Party group, with members in Pennsylvania, Delaware and New Jersey.
Gay rights groups and some politicians, including Philadelphia City Councilman Jim Kenney (D), have called for a boycott of the company or worse.
"To threaten government action against a law abiding company solely because its president voices an opinion that these men disagree with is completely irrational, discriminatory, and hateful,” Adams said.
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, a Baptist minister, declared Aug. 1 “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day” to support a business “whose executives are willing to take a stand for the Godly values.” The Tea Party group’s effort is launching Wed. in conjunction with Huckabee’s campaign.
Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, who like Huckabee ran for president as a darling of social conservatives, joined the cause along with religious leaders.
In a letter last week to Chick-fil-A’s Cathy, Kenny wrote: “As a fellow American and an elected member of Philadelphia City Council; I am entitled to express my opinion as well. So please -- take a hike and take your intolerance with you. There is no place for this type of hate in our great City of Brotherly and Sisterly Affection.”
The company’s website lists 8 restaurants located in Philadelphia out of a total of 60 across Pa.
"In America, leftist like Philadelphia Councilman Jim Kenny and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel support all types of diversity except when it comes to a diversity of opinion," said Adams.
A statement posted Tuesday on the Chick-fil-A website says in part: "The Chick-fil-A culture and service tradition in our restaurants is to treat every person with honor, dignity and respect – regardless of their belief, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender. We will continue this tradition in the over 1,600 Restaurants run by independent Owner/Operators. Going forward, our intent is to leave the policy debate over same-sex marriage to the government and political arena."
- Read the full statement here.