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[ Friends ] Open Question : Help: friendship troubles ?

I do not wanna give too much specific information out, but this situation has been stressing me out. 
There’s a kid in my school (high school) who is republican and very vocal about it, however he isn’t rude to people of other political beliefs. He’s quite respectful, and loves friendly debate. However, everyone hates him because of his beliefs. He was bullied so badly at a previous high school (he’d be shoved into lockers and stuff) that he had to switch to my school last year. He has no friends, and I’m not exaggerating when I say that. Over the past month I have gotten to be very close to him, we both love hockey and have some other shared interests, but what I’ve found is that he is one of the most caring, funny, and smart people I have ever met! I don’t agree with all of his political beliefs, but that doesn’t bother me. My personal belief is that we need to show love to everyone no matter what, even if they’re different. My friends however HATE this kid. They’re mad at me for being friends with him, and it’s stressing me out. It would be against everything I’ve ever been taught to abandon him, but my friends refuse to get to know him like I did. I don’t know what to do 🙁 I’m not gonna cut him off or anything, but what do I say to my friends? What do I do when they ignore him when he hangs out with us before school starts? He is just so sad that he can’t make friends, and it breaks my heart. 🙁  He’s just so socially awkward sometimes bc he has never had proper friends and that makes the bullying worse :/ 

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