The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Angela Dallara, Communications Associate, Freedom to Marry

Evan Wolfson: Anti-Gay Forum "Not Just Wrong, But Increasingly Bad Politics"


In response to the announcement that the so-called National Organization for Marriage will sponsor a forum with Republican presidential candidates this weekend in Des Moines, Evan Wolfson, founder and President of Freedom to Marry, issued the following statement:

"It's appalling to see Republican candidates for president trooping to an event sponsored by an anti-gay group such as the so-called National Organization for Marriage (NOM). Presidential candidates should be working to bring our country together to tackle the big problems we confront, not pandering to the low agendas of organizations seeking to divide Americans and attack families. Ironically, kowtowing to anti-gay prejudice is not just bad policy, it is bad politics. A solid majority of Americans, including 59 percent of independent voters and 70 percent of voters between 18-34 years old, support the freedom to marry. Anti-gay groups like NOM are out of step with Americans who understand that government has no business putting obstacles in the path of any of us, gay or non-gay, seeking to take care of our loved ones and make ends meet in these tough economic times."

The National Organization for Marriage is one of 18 groups the Southern Poverty Law Center profiled last year for having "continued to pump out demonizing propaganda " towards gay and lesbian people. Most recently, NOM poured approximately $40,000 into the Iowa special election in a failed attempt to revoke marriage legislation.

NOM is also currently under investigation or facing court battles in multiple states for flouting campaign finance laws. Four federal judges and three state boards, from California to Maine, have rejected NOM's accusations of "harassment" by gay and lesbian advocates and determined that the organization is not exempt from state disclosure rules.

Freedom to Marry is the gay and non-gay partnership working to win marriage equality nationwide. Headed by Evan Wolfson, one of America's leading civil rights advocates and lawyers, Freedom to Marry brings new resources and a renewed context of urgency and opportunity to this social justice movement.