For Immediate Release

Organization Profile: 

Jackie Yodashkin
Communications Director, Freedom to Marry

Freedom to Marry Calls on GOP Candidates to Renounce NOM Pledge

NEW YORK - Following the release of internal strategy memos of the so-called National Organization for Marriage (NOM), which call for the use of race as a means of impeding the freedom to marry for same-sex couples, Freedom to Marry joined AMERICAblog's call on GOP candidates, all of whom took a NOM pledge to push for a Federal Marriage Amendment, nominate anti-marriage judges to the Supreme Court and appoint an anti-marriage Attorney General, among other anti-freedom to marry actions to renounce their pledge.

"Now that NOM's race-baiting strategy of pitting American against American, minority against minority, and family members against family members is out in the open, we call on GOP candidates to renounce their NOM pledges," said Evan Wolfson, founder and President of Freedom to Marry, the campaign to win marriage nationwide.  "A president's job is to lead and unite the nation, not take part in a politics of division and cruelty.  Anyone seeking the nation's highest office should not be affiliated with a group seeking to discredit the strong and clear voice of those African-American civil rights champions, such as John Lewis, Julian Bond, and Coretta Scott King, who have stood up for the freedom to marry and the equal civil rights of all people, including gay people of color." 

The NOM wedge-strategy documents, laid out as part of its $20 million Strategy for Victory, were made public through an investigation in Maine into NOM’s attempts to circumvent and undermine campaign finance and disclosure laws, and publicized by the Human Rights Campaign.  The documents include the following strategy for use in the African American community:

The strategic goal of this project is to drive a wedge between gays and blacks—two key Democratic constituencies. Find, equip, energize and connect African American spokespeople for marriage, develop a media campaign around their objections to gay marriage as a civil right; provoke the gay marriage base into responding by denouncing these spokesmen and women as bigots.

The memo also outlines NOM’s strategies for targeting Latino communities.  Notwithstanding NOM’s efforts, an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll, conducted Feb. 29 through March 3, confirmed growth in support for the freedom to marry since October 2009 across nearly every slice of the electorate, with strong growth in support among African-Americans by 56% (from 32% to 50%) and Hispanic voters now supporting the freedom to marry by nearly 2 to 1 (55% to 30%).


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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.

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