Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who joined other top Republicans in reaching out to the LGBT community at the GOP convention last month, is taking a further step to unify the party as the presidential election heats up in the fall.

Gingrich has agreed to keynote the annual convention of Log Cabin Republicans, the influential GOP LGBT group.

In a note to Secrets, Gingrich said, "I am going to focus on national security and issues that bring us together."

During his convention speech in Cleveland, Gingrich highlighted the international terror threats to gays. "If our enemies had their way, gays, lesbians and transgender citizens would be put to death as they are today in the Islamic State and Iran," he said.

The convention featured Donald Trump and other Republican leaders expressing support for the LGBT community, just the latest sign of mending relations that have at times been frayed, especially over same sex marriage.

Log Cabin Republicans President Gregory T. Angelo said that Gingrich was quick to agree to be his group's convention keynote speaker. He expects about 400 to attend the September 28 dinner that in the past has featured former Homeland Secretary Tom Ridge and vice presidential daughter Mary Cheney.

He had praise for Gingrich being the first GOP convention speaker to mention transgenders.

Angelo also said that the GOP outreach should help push the LGBT vote for Trump to a new high.

Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at