Dear Friends of Marriage,
California citizens fight back!
The political establishment is abuzz about the launch of the National Organization for Marriage's new "Two Peas in a Pod" ad, educating citizens about both Tom Campbell's and Sen. Barbara Boxer's support for gay marriage. As the Associated Press headline put it, "Gay Marriage Foes Attack Calif. GOP Senate Hopeful."
Here's the backstory. A few months ago Tom Campbell, who was getting trounced in the polls for the California governor's race, decided to drop out and run instead for the GOP nomination for the U.S. Senate. Tom's been around a long time, so he has pretty good name recognition, and he immediately leapt to the top of the polls in a three-way race with HP executive Carly Fiorina and Chuck DeVore (a favorite with many conservatives). We knew both Chuck DeVore and Carly Fiorina had stood with the 7 million Californian voters who braved threats, harassment, and intimidation to stand up for marriage in the Prop 8 election in November of 2008.
But where did Tom Campbell stand on the marriage issue and who did he stand with? Marriage is important in itself, but it's also a strong symbol of a candidate's underlying values, especially in California where there has been such a relentless effort to demonize and hurt people with the courage to stand for marriage.
Tom, it turns out, is not only pro-gay marriage. He's so pro-gay marriage he actually published an op-ed urging you and me to vote against Prop 8.
I happened to be in Dana Point, California around that time at a national conference for Christian business executives. I asked a few of my friends there if they knew that Tom Campbell was pro-gay marriage. "Tom? Pro-gay marriage?" They were shocked. They hadn't heard.
Well, these were very well-informed California donors and voters. And yet they hadn't heard that in one of the great epic battles in California history, Tom Campbell had sided with Gavin Newsom, Barbara Boxer, and Jerry Brown, against your values. Well, we were pretty sure that Tom wasn't going to tell 'em the news. Something had to be done.
So we launched a new public education project to inform California citizens about Tom's and Barbara Boxer's support for gay marriage.
(You can see the ad, here.)
Every problem is also an opportunity. Precisely because so few voters knew about Tom's pro-gay-marriage record, we knew that with a very modest initial ad buy we had a shot at making a huge difference in public understanding. We launched just the initial ad buy of $300,000 in key areas on cable television. (We have more up our sleeve--I'll tell you about that later.)
And boy did the world sit up and take notice! The Sacramento Bee Capitol Alert, the San Jose Mercury News, Associated Press, Politico, The Hill, CQuarterly--the political establishment knows this is something that has never happened before. ...Or at least not since Dede Scozzafava in New York's 23 tried to become the first openly pro-gay-marriage Republican in Congress.
You remember what happened there, thanks to your support for NOM: We let voters know she was pro-gay marriage and they abandoned her in droves. Half of the Doug Hoffman voters said Dede's support for gay marriage was a factor in their decision to abandon Dede.
This is an example of NOM's emerging new model for victory. The press and the pols want you and me to believe that people don't care about the marriage issue--but we know better. Politicians may try to confuse voters. The public doesn't learn the truth, necessarily, on their own. Yet gay-marriage advocates cannot win unless the people are kept uninformed. Informing and equipping them to make a difference is what we at NOM do in a strategic fashion.
Your support to NOM is what make this possible, so thank you. We are your voice for your values--to fight for God's truth about marriage and to win!
We haven't heard back from Sen. Boxer yet, but how has Tom Campbell responded to this first burst of attention? By pretending it's not going to matter.
According to the Associated Press,
Campbell campaign spokesman James Fisfis said Campbell has made no secret that he opposed Proposition 8.
Campbell believes that people should be allowed to marry whether they're gay or straight, he said.
He said single-issue voters opposed to gay marriages are likely to support one of Campbell's Republican opponents, former Hewlett Packard chief executive Carly Fiorina or state Assemblyman Chuck DeVore. Both believe marriage should be between a man and a woman, their campaigns said Monday.
Oh, Tom, oh Tom.
Let me tell you: Tom's wrong about a lot of things. Marriage is not just a single issue in the minds of California voters. Especially in California, it's a key indicator of whose side a candidate will take down the road on a lot of issues when the going gets tough: Will he be on your side? Will he stand with courage for your values? Or will you find him standing with San Francisco liberals to win media applause?
But Tom's also wrong about something else: The people telling pollsters they lean towards voting for Tom Campbell do NOT know his position on gay marriage. Tom's position on gay marriage IS a big secret with Californians.
How do I know that? Well, we did a poll. NOM commissioned a poll of likely GOP primary voters last weekend, before launching our "Two Peas in a Pod" ad. We're about to release a press release on the results so I don't want to give away too much yet, but let me put it this way: Tom Campbell's own supporters are seven times more likely to believe he opposes gay marriage than to correctly identify him as a supporter of gay marriage.
When the people find out the truth, look out Tom--your world is going to be rocked.
Chuck Devore, for one, has already come out swinging, according to the Sacramento Bee:
Assemblyman Chuck DeVore threw verbal punches at his two GOP congressional opponents Wednesday, predicting that Tom Campbell's campaign will collapse and characterizing Carly Fiorina as a political "dilettante."
DeVore, in a meeting with the Sacramento Bee's Capitol Bureau, smiled when reminded that columnist George Will had predicted that he would win the Republican primary for Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer's seat. "He's a wise man," DeVore quipped.
The Irvine Republican predicted that Campbell's campaign is doomed, despite a new Field Poll showing Campbell with a six percentage point lead over Fiorina and a 19-point lead over DeVore. Roughly 40 percent of voters are undecided.
DeVore said that Campbell's support is due partly to a "lot of soft name ID" that will deteriorate once voters learn that he opposed a ban on same-sex marriage and that he had proposed a one-year, 32-cent gas tax increase to bolster state coffers.
DeVore also predicted a backlash by conservative voters against Campbell's support for Proposition 1A, a failed ballot measure last year that would have temporarily raised taxes by $16 billion in return for something many Republicans sought--stricter limits on state spending.
The National Organization for Marriage launched a nearly $300,000 ad campaign this week to rip Campbell on both the tax and same-sex marriage issues, said DeVore, predicting that the campaign will hurt the former congressman, state finance director and dean of UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business.
"You find conservatives supporting Campbell -- and that can't last, it won't last," DeVore said.
Truth will prevail. With your help and God's, that is! Thank you once again for helping us fight the good fight.
At NOM we understand that this fight is not fundamentally political; it is spiritual and moral. Politics is just one important manifestation of the real problem: the larger culture war on Truth and Love.
Nobody knows that better than NOM's president Maggie Gallagher, who has fought the good fight on a wide variety of fronts: cultural, intellectual, religious. In this week's syndicated column she takes on a question that for most of human history didn't need even to be asked: Is there a right to adultery?
"You can't legislate morality," we are always told. Maybe not, but perhaps we could come up with a way to encourage a little common decency. On behalf of the injured wives, is there really nothing we can do to throw a little sand on the wheels of their marketing machines? ...
Currently we offer the person most injured by adultery -- the innocent spouse -- only one legal option for redress: the nuclear option of exploding her own family through divorce. I understand why women might choose that option, but not why we are so unwilling to give them any other option.
As Maggie concludes, "People do bad things. We can't always stop them. But we could prevent them from turning adultery into a business model."
And check out the stories below on Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse's outreach through the Ruth Institute to create a culture of lifelong and life-giving marriage for the next generation.
So much is happening here at NOM, I don't always tell you about all of it. But every day, I promise you, I'm grateful to you for the good you've made possible.
Your courage and your steadfastness, your prayers and your encouragement, are my inspiration.
Please, keep 'em coming!
God bless you and keep you,
National Organization for Marriage
20 Nassau Street, Suite 242
Princeton, NJ 08542
P.S. NOM relies on your help! When you donate to NOM--whether you can give $20 or $200, or maybe a monthly donation of just $10--you help us amplify your voice and promote your values. With your help we can renew our marriage culture and transmit it to the next generation.
NOM Featured Article
"A Right to Adultery?"
March 17, 2010
NOM in the News
"Gay Marriage Foes Attack Calif. GOP Senate Hopeful"
March 15, 2010
U.S. Senate candidate Tom Campbell's support of same-sex marriages came under attack Monday in a statewide television ad funded by a national group that promotes traditional marriage.
"Conservative Group Launches Ads Against Tom Campbell"
Sacramento Bee Capitol Alert
March 15, 2010
A national group opposed to gay marriage on Monday launched 30-second ads attacking Republican U.S. Senate candidate Tom Campbell for his stance against Proposition 8, the 2008 voter-approved initiative to define marriage in the state constitution as between a man and a woman.
"Marriage Group Attacks Campbell"
March 15, 2010
National Organization for Marriage says it's putting $275,000 behind this ad that compares California Republican Tom Campbell, who's running for governor Senate, and Senator Barbara Boxer.
"Former Rep. Campbell Finds His Fit in Third Try"
March 19, 2010
Indeed, the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) launched a $275,000 ad buy in recent days that focused mostly on deriding Campbell's positions on taxes rather than his support for gay marriage.
"Ad Paints Campbell, Boxer as Peas in a Pod"
March 15, 2010
A conservative advocacy group that was involved in the Prop 8 ballot initiative campaign that banned gay marriage in the state is revisiting the issue, this time in the context of the Senate race.
"Two Peas, Same Liberal Pod????"
California Majority Report blog
March 15, 2010
The so-called National Organization for Marriage claims to have gone up on the air in California with an ad designed to take down Republican Senatorial frontrunner Tom Campbell. The ad alleges that Campbell and Boxer both support increased income taxes, increased gas taxes and gay marriage. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aEpbNqqnIro&feature=player_embedded
"San Diego-Based Group Mounts Effort to Elect Conservative Judges"
March 14, 2010
The website, BetterCourtsNow.com, also includes testimonials from at least one person affiliated with the National Organization for Marriage (NOM), a group that has been in the center of political battles over gay marriage in California and around the country.
"Gay-Marriage Supporters Lodge New Complaint Against Mormon Church"
March 20, 2010
Karger accuses the Mormon church of setting up the National Organization for Marriage in 2007 to work to qualify Proposition 8 for the November 2008 ballot in California. The group "came out of nowhere," Karger said, "and all of a sudden it began raising big, big money."
"D.C. 'Gay Marriage' Law Could Be Reversed"
March 15, 2010
"We're fighting through the courts. We think we will ultimately win and get the chance to use the initiative process to get the people of D.C. a vote," Maggie Gallagher, president of the National Organization for Marriage, told Baptist Press. "... Our fundamental reason for optimism is that the legal arguments on their side are very weak. What they're saying is that the politicians on the D.C. city council can override a right granted in the charter. And I don't think that makes any sense."
"D.C. Residents Alarmed by Robo-Calls"
March 13, 2010
"The National Organization for Marriage is sponsoring robo-calling of DC residents asking if they think marriage should be between only one man and one woman. Since marriage equality is now a fact in the city the reasons for this survey might not be apparent."
"I Just Got Called by the National Organization for Marriage"
Dave in DC
March 13, 2010
Ordinarily, I hang up on all telemarketing calls, but today I got a robocall survey from the National Organization for Marriage.
"NY Gay Groups Renew Push for Same-Sex Marriage Vote"
March , 2010
Maggie Gallagher, president of the National Organization for Marriage which opposes same-sex marriage, said gay rights advocates face an uphill battle.
"They no longer are persuading people that gay marriage is a good idea," she said. "I don't think it's very credible to claim that this victory is some sort of bellwether for the popularity of gay marriage in elections in New York.
"Proponents Push to Legalize Same-Sex Marriage in Rhode Island"
Rhode Island Catholic
March 13, 2010
Christopher Plante, executive director of the National Organization for Marriage Rhode Island, feels that voters who do not want to see same-sex marriage become law in Rhode Island had better begin vocalizing their opposition at the ballot box.