Illinois Republican Chairman Pat Brady announced his resignation.
Brady turned is his letter of resignation on Tuesday morning.
He has served as party chairman since August 2009.
But party leaders recently formed a committee to select his replacement sometime this month.
They had a problem with Brady’s support for a proposal that would legalize gay marriage in Illinois. Brady said he made the endorsement personally, not as Republican chairman.
On Wednesday, Brady told WGN that he feels that he and Senator Mark Kirk are returning the Republican Party to its traditional roots.
“We’re the party of Abraham Lincoln. We were founded as an abolitionist party to end slavery,” he said. “Our bedrock principle as Republicans is equality of treatment under the law.”
“I think Senator Kirk is leading the way to bring us back to where we always have been as a party,” he continued. “And a by-product of that, when we stay true to those Lincoln-esque roots, we do pretty well electorally, too — as Senator Kirk has done, as Judy Baar Topinka has done, as many of our elected officials have done. So I think it’s more of a return to our historic roots than pulling away.”