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Category Archives: Human Rights Campaign

Members of Congress Commend National Organization for Marriage For Suing Internal Revenue Service over Illegal Release of Its Tax Return

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 25, 2013
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


"We are grateful to these leaders of the House for stepping forward to express their support of our efforts to hold lawbreakers within the IRS accountable for their crimes."  —Brian Brown, NOM president —

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Washington, D.C. — Three dozen members of the United States House of Representatives have signed a letter to the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) praising it for filing a lawsuit against the Internal Revenue Service for illegally leaking its confidential tax return including a list of its top donors. The confidential tax data ended up in the possession of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) whose president was a national co-chair of President Obama's reelection committee.

"We applaud you in your effort to find the truth about what happened to your donor lists as we in Congress continue fighting to hold the Obama Administration accountable for these abuses of American citizens' constitutional rights," the letter said. The letter was signed by 36 members of the US House of Representatives including Republican Study Committee Chairman, Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA), and Values Action Team Co-Chair, Rep. Joe Pitts (R-PA).

"We are grateful to these leaders of the House for stepping forward to express their support of our efforts to hold lawbreakers within the IRS accountable for their crimes," said Brian Brown, NOM's president. "No group should have to worry that its confidential tax return information including donor information will be leaked by the IRS and end up in the hands of its arch political opponents."

The leaking of NOM's tax return and confidential donor information has been investigated by the federal government, but the Obama Administration refuses to provide the public with any accounting of what they have found, claiming that the law protects the identity of the individuals involved in the criminal act of leaking the information in the first instance. Releasing taxpayer tax returns is a felony under federal law. Several committees of the US House have examined the matter, including the Committee on Ways & Means and the Committee on Oversight & Government Reform.

"The Obama Administration has adopted a Nixonian approach of delay, denial and obstruction to keep under wraps the truth about who was involved in this crime," said John Eastman, NOM's Chairman. "Our lawsuit is intended to get all the facts to the American people so they can hold people accountable. The public is entitled to know how this crime unfolded and whether anyone at the White House, Obama Reelection Committee or the HRC had any role in this disturbing event."

Eastman testified about the issue before the Ways & Means Committee and was the recipient of the Congressional letter.

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray (x130), [email protected], or Matille Thebolt (x143), [email protected], at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

Three Dozen Lawmakers Applaud NOM's Efforts to Find the Truth about the IRS; Vow to Continue Fighting to Hold Obama Adminstration Accountable

Three dozen members of the United States House of Representatives signed a letter to the National Organization for Marriage's chairman, Dr. John Eastman, cheering NOM's litigation against the IRS's unlawful disclosure of confidential tax forms filed by the organization.

Congressional Letter to NOM on IRS Case

The letter, dated November 21st, expresses support for NOM's efforts to find the truth. The Congressional members also pledged to continue their work to hold the IRS accountable:

While it is up to the court to determine the outcome of your case, unfortunately your allegation are not unique or even unexpected given the Obama Administration's well-documented practice of using federal agencies to target conservative groups.

[...]

We applaud you in your effort to find the truth about what happened to your donor lists as we in Congress continue fighting to hold the Obama Administration for these abuses of American citizens' constitutional rights.

NOM is very grateful to these Representatives and encouraged by their interest and support! Click here to read the letter in full and to find out if your Representative signed!

National Organization for Marriage Dismisses Frivolous Human Rights Campaign Complaint Over Its Federal Tax Return; Blasts Group That Violated Federal Law By Illegally Publishing Tax Return

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 18, 2013
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


"NOM fully complies with federal law concerning public availability of its Form 990 tax return. It's the HRC that has ignored federal law by publishing an illegally obtained copy of our 2008 tax return." — Brian Brown, NOM president —

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Washington, D.C. — The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) today dismissed as frivolous and ironic a complaint made by the misnamed Human Rights Campaign (HRC), which falsely accused NOM of failing to disclose its 2012 federal tax return. The HRC previously published an illegally obtained copy of NOM's 2008 tax return, leaked by the IRS in violation of federal criminal law. The illegal release of NOM's tax return is the subject of the current Congressional investigation of the IRS Scandal and is also the subject of civil litigation filed by NOM against the IRS.

"NOM fully complies with federal law regarding the public availability of our Form 990 tax return. Our 2012 Form 990 was mailed to the IRS on November 15th as required by law. It is available for public inspection on the NOM website," said Brian Brown, NOM's President. "This frivolous complaint by the HRC is extremely ironic given the fact that HRC published on its website the private information from NOM's 2008 Form 990, which is a felony under federal law and which is the subject of current Congressional investigations. NOM has also filed a federal lawsuit against the IRS to find out who in the IRS illegally released to the HRC our confidential donor information."

The HRC received and published online NOM's 2008 Schedule B list of donors, a document that has been established was illegally released by the IRS. The Obama Administration has refused to identify the criminal within the IRS responsible for leaking NOM's return. Various US House committees continue to conduct investigations into the issue and NOM has filed civil litigation in an effort to hold those responsible accountable for their actions.

"We are looking forward to discovery in our lawsuit to find out which IRS employee(s) were responsible for illegally releasing our confidential donor information, and whether anyone outside the IRS played a role in the conspiracy to commit this felony," said Brown. "The HRC can file whatever frivolous complaints they want, but we're focused like a laser beam on holding those people responsible for this crime accountable."

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray (x130), [email protected], or Matille Thebolt (x143), [email protected], at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

"The IRS Needs to Pay" - NOM to File Suit Today

At The Washington Times, Stephen Dinan reports that "The National Organization for Marriage will sue the IRS on Thursday, saying it has evidence that someone within the agency leaked the organization’s private donor list to its political enemies in 2012 but that nobody has been held responsible" [emphasis added].

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Dinan spoke to attorney Cleta Mitchell of ActRight Legal Foundation which is handling NOM's case. She said:

Somebody did this deliberately and it was planned, and we need to know who it was. The IRS needs to pay. Ultimately, the IRS is responsible for the damages.

Dinan also quotes NOM's chairman, Dr. John Eastman, explaining how the fact that the leaked documents had internal IRS markings on that that had been hidden makes for a compelling case:

It suggests to me that this thing was deliberate and at high levels — head of the division, a political appointee, somebody. And darn it, we’re going to find out who did it, and we’re going to wrap it up with a bow and send it over to the Justice Department and keep the pressure on.

You can read Dinan's entire piece here.


And don't forget that you can hear John Eastman and Cleta Mitchell both speaking today at The Heritage Foundation as part of their ongoing series, Preserve the Constitution.

The event will be live-streamed from 12:00pm - 1:00pm EDT, and you can sign up for an email reminder here.

Oh, and the topic of the event? "Political Speech and the IRS: Protecting the First Amendment." Surely, this one is not to be missed!

House Oversight to Investigate "Apparently Politically Driven Leak"

At NRO's The Corner, Eliana Johnson reports that the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, headed by Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Ca.), will be investigating the politically-motivated targeting of conservative groups by the I.R.S., and particularly the leak of NOM's confidential tax documents to Human Rights Campaign:

Issa and subcommittee chairman Jim Jordan notified Treasury Department inspector general Russell George and Internal Revenue Service acting administrator Danny Werfel in letters dated September 26 that the National Organization for Marriage, the conservative group founded in opposition to the legalization of gay marriage, and a handful of tea-party groups have signed waivers allowing senior stafff on the committee to access their tax return information. “With the authority granted by these waivers,” they write, “we request that you produce all documents and communications referring or relating” to the applications and their review within the agency.

Johnson quotes a statement from Representative Issa that explains the scope of the investigation. According to Issa, "This information will give us a better sense of why these groups faced delays, what questions they were asked, and what sort of communications were occurring within the IRS in regards to the inappropriate delays and the apparently politically driven leak."

We look forward to the Committee's findings.

National Organization for Marriage Decries Latest Examples of Human Rights Campaign Misleading on Marriage

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 22, 2013

Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Jen Campbell (703-683-5004)


"Instead of spending millions of dollars on bogus claims featuring purloined logo designs, our coalition is reaching out to the millions of Americans who have already voted to protect marriage as the sacred union of husband and wife." — Brian Brown, NOM president —

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Washington, D.C. — Brian Brown, after the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) was forced to remove images and a quotation from first lady Laura Bush after she demanded they do so, reacted to the news by saying: “The HRC's television ad falsely implies that former First Lady Laura Bush supports their radical agenda, and she was right to demand that they remove it. This is just the latest example of how same-sex marriage advocates misstate and misappropriate the truth. They can't even come up with an original logo design for their new ad campaign. Instead, they have misappropriated a logo I personally designed for NOM half a decade ago to represent the unique status of marriage as the union of one man and one woman."

The HRC together with others in a coalition called “Respect for Marriage" is airing a television ad featuring Republicans expressing support for gays and lesbians, implying that they all want the law changed to redefine marriage. Mrs. Bush was featured in the ad. Immediately upon becoming aware of the ad, she demanded that it be pulled and that she be removed from the advertisement.

The NOM logo is made up of a conjoined blue and red ring. The HRC-led "Coalition for Marriage" logo also contains a conjoined blue and red ring. Brown said that the attempt to mimic NOM's logo is designed to trade on NOM's positive image among Republican leaders and the GOP rank-and-file in an attempt to fool Republican voters into thinking that there is a groundswell among Republicans for redefining marriage, when the opposite is true: “The HRC knows that NOM is viewed positively by Republican leaders and voters, so they're trying to capitalize on our image and trick voters into thinking that there is a growing contingent of republicans who want to redefine marriage. In fact, Republican voters are solidly pro-marriage and repeatedly have defeated those few GOP legislators who have opposed the party position on marriage. In fact, as the Associated Press recently reported, three of the four Republican Senators in New York who voted to redefine marriage wound up ending their political career over that vote. Republican leaders and voters are solidly pro-marriage. It's laughable for the HRC to attempt to pretend otherwise."

Brown concluded: “There is only one coalition that truly respects marriage, and that is the NOM-led coalition that is working to preserve it, not the gay marriage groups like HRC who wish to redefine marriage. To show our commitment to true marriage, NOM is leading the March for Marriage (http://marriagemarch.org/) on March 26th. We expect thousands of people to join us to march from the National Mall to the US Supreme Court on the day of oral arguments in the Proposition 8 case. Our broad coalition reflects the diversity of the pro-marriage movement. Instead of spending millions of dollars on bogus claims featuring purloined logo designs, our coalition is reaching out to the millions of Americans who have already voted to protect marriage as the sacred union of husband and wife. These Americans know the difference between a fake group and one that legitimately respects marriage."

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray (x130), [email protected], or Jen Campbell (x145), [email protected], at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

How Many Scientific Truths Must Be Unsayable?

Dan Rafter at the HRC blog takes issue with Maggie Gallagher quoting a study in the October issue of Journal of Marriage and Family which found that married opposite-sex couples in Britain are five times more stable than same-sex couples (cohabiting opposite-sex couples are twice as stable). The study also found:

"Compared to married couples, the dissolution rates for male and female same-sex cohabiters were seven and five times higher, respectively. Among cohabiters, the differences were smaller: The dissolution rate for male and female same-sex cohabiters was approximately double the rate for different-sex cohabiters."

Moreover, the author found no increase in stability between the 1958 and 1970 birth cohort.

These findings agree with the other literature I've seen about the relative stability and instability of same-sex vs. opposite-sex couples.

Rafter responds by calling Maggie's citation of the study an "insult to same-sex couples" which is aimed to "demonize" and "harm" them and implies a "insidious mission."

Rafter concludes this way (to make it easier to respond, I'm numbering his sentences):

[1] This is an insulting and flawed argument. [2] I am one of the many, many LGBT people in a stable, committed same-sex relationship, and my heterosexual parents are currently going through a divorce. [3] People put a great deal of time, commitment, and energy into forming meaningful relationships – regardless of whether they are same-sex or opposite-sex unions. [4] To sweepingly imply that one demographic is more prone to breakups – and to use that claim as a reason to deny an entire community of people basic rights such as marriage and the ability to start a family – is as offensive as it is inaccurate.

Let's take these in turn:

Sentence 1: Rafter's statement is not an argument, just an accusation.

Sentence 2: Rafter provides in evidence of his counter-position exactly 2 couples - him and his parents. This is anecdotal. I could just as easily say all the heterosexuals I know are stable and all the gay people I know are not, but this would not be an argument either.

Sentence 3: We can grant that many people put time and energy into forming relationships. But the question which the author of the Journal of Marriage and Family actually looked at is whether they are successful in doing so. The author argued that we one can observe significant differences between the various groups he studied. Rafter chooses to ignore this legitimate discussion.

Sentence 4: Gallagher (and the author of the journal article) didn't "sweepingly imply" anything. The author of the journal article conducted scientific research and provided evidence for his conclusions. If anyone is "sweepingly implying" it's clearly Rafter! Finally, Gallagher was very modest about what she actually concluded from the evidence. She explicitly said: "This of course cannot tell us how children fare on average when they are raised by stable same-sex couples, or whether gay marriage will significantly increase stability in same-sex couples." Does that sound like a "sweepingly implying" sentence? Hardly.

If Rafter wants to look at the evidence we do have of same-sex marital stability, we can look at it:

"Stockholm University’s study seems to confirm the American trend. In Norway, male same-sex marriages are 50 percent more likely to end in divorce than heterosexual marriages, and female same-sex marriages are an astonishing 167 percent more likely to be dissolved. In Sweden, the divorce risk for male-male partnerships is 50 percent higher than for heterosexual marriages, and the divorce risk for female partnerships is nearly double that for men."

If Rafter actually had conclusive proof for his positions he would state it. Instead he chose to attack Gallagher and the Journal of Marriage and Family. This does a disservice to reasonable debate, and it's notable considering how much time HRC spends accusing pro-marriage advocates of engaging in heated and empty rhetoric. Pot, meet kettle.

Rafter's posturing may please his readers at HRC, but fair-minded outside observers should take note of how both sides of this debate are actually conducting it.

Christian Post on FRC Refuting Claims it Calls Gays Pedophiles, Wants to Expel Gays

The Christian Post:

The LGBT advocacy group Human Rights Campaign and the Southern Poverty Law Center are standing by their decision to label conservative group Family Research Council a "hate" group even as some in their camp back away. But they say it's not because FRC simply opposes same-sex marriage. FRC is "hateful" because it links gay people to pedophiles, they claim.

HRC and SPLC also argue that the "hate" label should stick – even in the wake of a shooting that took place at the FRC headquarters last week – because the conservative group wants to expel gays from the U.S.

But are those claims true?

FRC, which champions traditional marriage and religious freedom, released a document this week refuting the charges of "hate."

"FRC has never said, and does not believe, that most homosexuals are child molesters," the group says in its document.

IBD Editorial: "Crickets Chirp When Leftist Hate Inspires Violence"

The Investor's Business Daily with an editorial on the FRC shooter:

A gay activist opens fire in a conservative organization's offices, inspired by the steady drumbeat of leftist vitriol against those who value traditional marriage, and no one says a word.

You won't hear any call for civil discourse from President Obama's bully pulpit over the shooting and wounding of a security guard at the offices of the conservative Family Research Council (FRC) in Washington, D.C.

The alleged shooter was a volunteer at a community center for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people, and the FRC favors traditional marriage.

Those who blamed Sarah Palin for the shooting of Congresswoman Gabriel Giffords or Rush Limbaugh for the Oklahoma City bombing are strangely silent.

At least the likes of ABC's Brian Ross didn't reflexively blame the Tea Party, as he did after a gunman shot up an Aurora, Colo., movie theater.

On Tuesday, the Human Rights Campaign put on its blog a piece titled, "Paul Ryan Speaking at Hate Group's Annual Conference," referring to the FRC.

It said that the "FRC has been labeled a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. It's a group that has advocated for the criminalization of homosexuality, called for LGBT people to be exported from the U.S., and has pushed dangerous lies trying to link being gay to pedophilia."

The FRC has done none of those things but that didn't stop the Daily Kos from vilifying the FRC for its support of Chick-fil-A: "Chick-fil-A's corporate 'charity' arm WinShape has donated millions of dollars to groups like Family Research Council. FRC doesn't just oppose marriage equality, they really do HATE gays."

Dana Milbank: NOM is Right That "Hate" Label Has to Go

Liberal Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank writes this week that the Human Rights Campaign and the Southern Poverty Law Center are "reckless" in labeling the Family Research Council a "hate group":

"...this shooting should remind us all of an important truth: that while much of the political anger in America today lies on the right, there are unbalanced and potentially violent people of all political persuasions. The rest of us need to be careful about hurling accusations that can stir up the crazies.

... I disagree with the Family Research Council’s views on gays and lesbians. But it’s absurd to put the group, as the law center does, in the same category as Aryan Nations, Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, Stormfront and the Westboro Baptist Church. The center says the FRC “often makes false claims about the LGBT community based on discredited research and junk science.” Exhibit A in its dossier is a quote by an FRC official from 1999 (!) saying that “gaining access to children has been a long-term goal of the homosexual movement.”

Offensive, certainly. But in the same category as the KKK?

Since the shooting, conservatives have complained that the media have played down the story. This probably has less to do with bias than with the fact that nobody was killed. Still, there is something to the complaint.

... The National Organization for Marriage, which opposes gay marriage, is right to say that the attack “is the clearest sign we’ve seen that labeling pro-marriage groups as ‘hateful’ must end.”

Erick Erickson: Human Rights Campaign Maintains Family Research Council is a “Hate Group”

Erick Erickson of Red State (and a contributor to CNN politics):

I got this email from Fred Sainz, the Vice President for Communications and Marketing at the Human Rights Company:

I have a great deal of admiration for you and like watching you on CNN. These Tweets are beneath you.

It’s really unseemly to insinuate — in any way — that HRC had anything to do with the violence that occurred today at FRC.

FRC IS a hate group. It’s not HRC that calls them that; it’s the Southern Poverty Law Center that has classified them as such – years ago. Have you seen the things that FRC says about gay people? I think if you did you wouldn’t be so quick to associate yourself with them

...I’m more than happy to have a dialogue with you on the issue but would ask that you not make irresponsible connections that are completely illogical.

He is referencing several tweets I made noting that just yesterday the Human Rights Campaign called Family Research Council a “hate group.” (See here and here)

I noted that if a gunman had entered the Human Rights Campaign’s offices a day after being labeled a “hate group” by a conservative organization, the media would be denouncing the conservative group as inciting the shooting and spend a week on homophobia, etc.

HRC vs. The Catholic Church

BuzzFeed:

The Human Rights Campaign's new president, Chad Griffin, started [the American Foundation for Equal Rights]. In a statement about today's announcement, he said the appointment sends "a chilling message" to the country.

"Bishop Cordileone has proven himself to be an anti-gay activist who encourages and promotes discrimination against LGBT people," he said.

"Catholic teaching calls on us to love our neighbors and to treat others with the same respect we wish for ourselves. Unfortunately, Bishop Cordileone’s crusade against LGBT people indicates he doesn’t take these particular teachings to heart," Griffin said. "While LGBT Catholics and their allies have worked relentlessly to create welcoming environments, the appointment of Bishop Cordileone sends a chilling message that, in the eyes of the hierarchy, same-sex relationships are not worthy of equal dignity and respect."

Black AIDS Institute: Obsession with Marriage Equality Hurting Black Gays

National gay groups pride themselves on inclusiveness but are they excluding the priorities of the group described below? 

HIV-AIDS is affecting black gay men in the United States on a scale unseen among any other group in the developed world, said a report issued Wednesday ahead of the International AIDS Conference.

So grave is the crisis that in some US cities, one in two black men who have sex with other men are HIV positive, according to the report from the Black AIDS Institute, the only national HIV-AIDS think tank focusing on African Americans.

"AIDS in America is a black disease, no matter how you look at it," its president and chief executive Phill Wilson, who is himself HIV positive, said ahead of Sunday's opening of the six-day global conference.

... Wilson also faulted mainstream gay rights groups for putting the HIV-AIDS crisis on the back burner, now that it is no longer a pressing issue for affluent gays in big cities whose bigger concern today is marriage equality.

"There are almost no national LGBT organizations today that give a rat's a** about the lives of black gay men as they are impacted by HIV-AIDS, and that's disgraceful," he said. -- AFP

Heritage's Hans von Spakovsky: It's Time to Investigate the IRS

Hans von Spakovsky is a senior fellow at the Heritage Foundation's Center for Legal and Judicial Studies and writes in FoxNews:

"...Somehow, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), a gay advocacy group, got its hands on Schedule B of the tax return filed by the National Organization for Marriage (NOM)—a conservative values organization that has sparred with the administration and liberal groups over homosexual marriage. The HRC – soon followed by scores of left-leaning publications, magazines, and blogs like the Huffington Post and Mother Jones – published the confidential document that revealed the names, contact information, and donation amounts of anyone who had given over $5,000 to NOM.

NOM has called for immediate investigations by the Justice Department and the Treasury Department’s Inspector General to determine how HRC gained possession of this document.

The posted documents contained original, official IRS markings that could only have come from individuals within the agency. Disclosing this confidential information by anyone at the IRS is a felony, punishable by fines of up to $5,000 and/or imprisonment for up to five years. Printing or publishing the schedule is also a crime, similarly punishable, which means that the HRC (and the Huffington Post) are potentially in deep legal trouble.

...Freedom of association (a basic Constitutional right) and the rule of law (a necessity of free and fair government) are being eroded by these underhanded, Chicago-style tactics. But for the ideological zealots within the federal government and their allies in left-wing advocacy groups, black letter law is apparently just another obstacle to re-election or to attacking one’s public policy opponents.

The IG and the DOJ need to undertake their investigations with utmost seriousness, swiftness and impartiality. And they should bring criminal indictments against anyone inside or outside of the IRS found to be responsible for these abuses of federal tax power. This kind of behavior is simply unacceptable, for it threatens the liberty and freedom of Americans who want to participate in the political process.

Update: Bomb Threat Which Evacuated DC Gay Organizations Under Investigation

Again, we find any threat of violence against people or property on either side of the marriage debate to be appalling and condemn such acts unequivocally. Our condolences and best wishes to the staff of these organizations. May we all strive for a civil debate about marriage without fear of reprisal and intimidation:

The offices of 11 gay rights organizations were briefly evacuated earlier today after receiving a series of bomb threats, including one that was phoned in from California.

Among the groups whose employees were evacuated were the Human Rights Campaign, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and the National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, WTOP reports. The first threats were reported about 11:45 a.m.

All together, D.C. police evacuated two buildings—the Human Rights Campaign's headquarters at 1640 Rhode Island Avenue NW and a building at 729 15th Street NW that houses the other targeted organizations, The Washington Blade reports.

One of the threats was relayed to authorities here by the Los Angeles Police Department, which received a phone call about 8 a.m. Pacific time from someone threatening to blow up the "gay and lesbian headquarters," the Blade reports. On that tip, the LAPD called D.C. police, who as a precaution also cleared out its Gay and Lesbian Liaison Unit's office in Dupont Circle.

Traffic outside the Human Rights Campaign's building was briefly blocked as police swept the area. Both buildings were eventually deemed safe and employees were allowed to return to work.

Police in both Washington and Los Angeles are still investigating the bomb threats. -- DCist