Dear Marriage Supporter,
The fight for your values is heating up in Iowa—and NOM is there to make sure your voice is heard!
Gov. Tim Pawlenty helped kick off our "Votes Have Consequences" Values Voters Bus Tour across 22 towns and cities in Iowa leading up to the Ames Straw Poll, the traditional kickoff for the GOP presidential campaigns.
The tour is jointly sponsored by NOM, the Susan B. Anthony List, and the Family Research Council. If you are in Iowa, come say hi! Let the candidates know that your values matter, and your votes have consequences! Go to www.NationForMarriage.org/BusTour for more information.
Thanks to each of you who reached out to make sure Gov. Pawlenty understands the importance of fighting for marriage. Gov. Pawlenty has long been a fighter for marriage in Minnesota, and after taking a few extra days in a busy campaign to think it over, he easily and enthusiastically signed on to NOM's Marriage Pledge, and he has joined the Values Voters tour.
NOM's Chris Plante was there when Gov. Pawlenty spoke:
We launched the Values Votes 'Votes Have Consequences' Bus tour at the foot of the state house, on Tuesday. A beautiful Iowa morning, a cool breeze, a crowd of media and major Iowa political figures, including the polished and attractive Lt. Gov Kim Reynolds.
Gov. Rick Perry, who has not yet announced his candidacy, made an appearance in the form of 12 or 15 college kids wearing bright orange t-shirts—the color of the University of Texas!
Gov. Pawlenty was up front, clear and confident in making the case for the importance of life and marriage to our nation.
As the Des Moines Register reported: "Pawlenty highlighted his record as a state lawmaker and governor on restricting abortion, defining marriage as a bond between a man and a woman and appointing judges who demonstrated 'restraint and humility.'"
Here's some local coverage of Gov. Pawlenty's speech on life and marriage from KCCI.com:
Sen. Rick Santorum, one of our greatest marriage champions, spoke this week at the Cedar Rapids Values Bus stop, on the importance of marriage and life to our nation.
The Sioux City Journal reports:
Santorum stressed the importance of family and moral foundations to the strength of the nation. The recent debt ceiling crisis was the result of a number of moral failings, including financial institutions taking advantage of risky housing markets, he said.
Foundational rights, such as the right to life and traditional marriage, "have been eroded by judges ... unelected and unaccountable," Santorum said.
He warned that as those foundational rights are usurped by the federal government Americans will enjoy less freedom.
"When you control the rights, when everyone does, you can grow a strong, healthy society, and that's what happened here," he said.
The Eastern Iowa Government headlined their story, "Santorum Talks Marriage During Bus Tour." A blogger videotaped Sen. Rick Santorum's off-the-cuff remarks on marriage in one of his many Iowa stops.
Watch Rick stand tall for marriage here:
Watch the mainstream media try to beat up on him, too, for standing strong for marriage! They have gotten the marriage story wrong at every turn and misunderstand how the issue is playing out nationally in this election season.
All the major GOP announced candidates have now signed NOM's Marriage Pledge (and we predict that Gov. Rick Perry, if he throws his hat in, will too). What does that mean? It means 2012 will be unlike 2008—marriage will be an issue. The GOP's major candidates for 2012 have now all done what Sen. John McCain refused to do: endorse a Federal Marriage Amendment, and commit to concrete actions to protect marriage.
Meanwhile President Obama's famous attempt to muddy the water in 2008 by claiming to Rev. Rick Warren that he supports traditional marriage will no longer work in 2012.
We're in a whole new strategic terrain in 2012. With a very big and clear public difference between whoever is the GOP nominee and the Democrats' champion Pres. Barack Obama, marriage voters can help tip the balance in key battleground states.
Someday soon the mainstream media will notice it! Meanwhile, thank you for making the Marriage Pledge and all NOM's important work possible!
I'm excited as well by some great news that just crossed my desk: Our friends over at the American Principles Project have secured a vitally important Presidential Debate in South Carolina on Sept. 5—and NOM's own founding Chairman, Prof. Robby George, will be the moderator along with Sen. Jim DeMint and Iowa's Rep. Steve King.
This means that for the first time, we can count on the concerns of social conservatives being taken seriously. All the candidates will have to voice their values on marriage, life, and religious liberty—and you will have a chance to discover whether their values are your values too.
Remember, values imply actions, not just words. What we are not willing to act to protect, we do not really value.
For the first time, social conservatives have a forum in the presidential process where their concerns are going to be heard, alongside (not instead of!) the other core concerns of what we might call "constitutional conservatives"—those committed to the principles of America's Founding. Visit www.americanprinciplesproject.com for more.
While you are there, you will notice that APP has launched a new internet TV show called "The Maggie Report." It's aimed at covering the latest developments on social issues for Tea Party and other conservatives. Go to www.MaggieReport.com and click on the little TV screen to see NOM's Chairman Maggie Gallagher in action.
One person who hasn't missed the immense strategic significant of NOM's Marriage Pledge is the Human Rights Campaign's Joe Solmonese—who is trying to use it to raise money to help support Pres. Obama:
"In just the last few weeks, four of the major GOP presidential candidates have pledged to support a constitutional amendment to ban marriage equality.
"The right wing is lashing out at our recent victory in New York by trying to turn marriage equality back into a national wedge issue—the same political play that helped keep George W. Bush in the White House for eight disastrous years.
"The election may still be months away, but the radical right's single-minded attempt to undermine progress is well underway. And this new marriage pledge is just a stark, ugly reminder of how critical our fight for equality is."
One thing Joe "you are a hater" Solmonese and I agree on: It's time to rev up our engines and fight for what's right. NOM will be there with you every step of the way to make sure your voices and your values will be heard!
God bless you!
Brian S. Brown
National Organization for Marriage
P.S. You can ensure that your voice is heard! Whether you can give $20 or $200, you can make a difference and stand up for marriage.