Monthly Archives: January 2012

URGENT MARRIAGE ALERT: Repealing Gay Marriage To Be Voted On Feb 1st! Tell your Legislators to vote YES on HB437!

NH Alert

Dear Marriage Supporter,

I've got exciting news! We've been told that HB437—a bill to repeal same-sex marriage—will be voted on Next Wednesday, February 1st!

Now is the time to call your legislators—especially House members—right away and ask them to VOTE YES ON HB437!

For more than two years, we've been working towards this moment. Thanks to your hard work and dedication, a majority in both houses now supports marriage and we are optimistic about next Wednesday's vote.

But Governor Lynch has already made it crystal clear that he plans to veto the bill—meaning it will take a 2/3 majority to override his veto.

That's why it's imperative that everyone makes calls right now on behalf of marriage and HB437! And the closest battle will be in the House of Representatives.

Please make at least two phone calls right now!

Take Action Now

Please also take the critical step of calling all your friends and family and encouraging them to do the same. Please forward this email on to them, or print this alert out and bring it with you to your church or community center! Everything you can do to encourage people to make calls helps the cause!

A personal phone call from a constituent is, after all, one of the most powerful and effective ways of contacting elected officials, especially New Hampshire state house members who answer their own phones.

Please take a moment to make a few phone calls right away, and plan on making a few calls later as well as we approach the vote next Wednesday. Tell them it's time for them to follow through with the mandate voters gave them in 2010 and repeal same-sex marriage. Time is short! The vote is next Wednesday!

In addition to your phone calls, with just a few clicks of the mouse—and a couple of minutes of your time—you can also send an email to each of the state senators and representatives from your district, giving your legislators a written record of your support for marriage.

Click here to send your email now!

Take Action Now

HB437 is a compromise bill—but it's a compromise that respects and restores the definition of marriage, while also allowing existing same-sex marriages to remain intact and providing benefits through civil unions.

Every vote counts, so please contact your legislators right away. I'll be sure to keep you up to date as things continue to develop. And please join me in praying and working for good news come next Wednesday!


PPP Polling: Marriage Amendment Winning in Minnesota

Democrat-leaning Public Policy Polling finds the Minnesota marriage amendment leading in the polls (PDF results here):

Should the Minnesota Constitution be amended to provide that only a union of one man and one woman shall be valid or recognized as a marriage in Minnesota?
Yes - 48%
No - 44%
Not sure - 8%

We've found that those who answer "Not Sure" tend to vote to protect marriage when given the privacy of a voting booth.

On the leading question "Do you think same-sex marriage should be legal or illegal?" Minnesotans respond:

Illegal - 47%
Legal - 43%
Not sure - 10%

Another interesting factoid: 34% of self-identified Democrats in Minnesota don't believe gay couples should be allowed to wed.

Dr. Morse to WA Legislature: "History Will Not Be Kind To You"

Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse of the Ruth Institute testifies to the Washington State Legislature.

"I'm here today to address you who've already made up your minds to redefine marriage. History will not be kind to you. Previous generations of social experimenters have caused unimaginable misery for millions of people. Particular people advocated the policies that led today to the 50% divorce rate, and 40% out of wedlock childbearing rate. And none of these people have ever been held accountable. But I'm here today to hold you to account for the predictable harm that you have already caused and will continue to cause in your effort to redefine marriage."

"And to those of you who vote for man-woman marriage: stay strong. History is on your side."

Christopher Plante to WA Legislature: "Marriage Should be Left to the People"

NOM Regional Director Christopher Plante speaks before the Washington State Legislature.

"[Marriage] is a decision that should be left to the people. NOM is committed to making sure that if [you] redefine marriage ... the people of Washington will have the say that they deserve, that basic right to vote on marriage and the definition of it."

Breaking News: Major Victory for Julea Ward!!

We've been following Julea Ward's story since last March, and today we're thrilled to report that the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals has found in her favor, as David French at NRO reports:

So far, 2012 has been a good year for religious liberty in federal court. Two weeks ago the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that religious organizations have a First Amendment right to choose their ministers — even in the face of federal nondiscrimination policies. Today, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a trial-court ruling that essentially allowed Eastern Michigan University to erect a “no Christians allowed” sign outside its graduate counseling program.

... The trial court had essentially ruled that the university could do whatever it wanted with its curriculum, and if it wanted to mandate that Christian students affirm homosexuality while granting referrals and exemptions to other students on other issues, it could. The Sixth Circuit disagreed, strongly:

A reasonable jury could find that the university dismissed Ward from its counseling program because of her faith-based speech, not because of any legitimate pedagogical objective. A university cannot compel a student to alter or violate her belief systems based on a phantom policy as the price for obtaining a degree.

The stakes of this case were very high. If the university had prevailed, students would truly have been at the mercy of ad hoc ideological demands reformulated as “curricular requirements.” Understanding the stakes for individual liberty, theMichigan attorney general, the American Center for Law and Justice (where I’m a senior counsel), the Becket Fund, Eugene Volokh, and others submitted amicus briefs on Ward’s behalf. They were opposed by, among others, Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, LAMBDA Legal, and the ACLU.

You can read the Sixth Circuit opinion here (PDF).

WSJ: Battle Lines Are Drawn on Same-Sex Marriage

The Wall Street Journal:

... in an indication of how controversial the issue [of same-sex marriage] remains, several states are considering legislation to roll back gay-marriage rights or further enshrine laws that forbid gay marriage. North Carolina and Minnesota will have constitutional amendments on their ballots in November.

... Brian Brown, the president of the National Organization for Marriage, one of the leading groups opposing same-sex marriage, said that many of the polls indicating support for gay marriage ask leading questions about whether same-sex marriage should be illegal, suggesting punishment by the state.

"The American people oppose same-sex marriage. That has not changed," he said. He said his group would spend roughly $15 million to $20 million this year fighting same-sex marriage, including in Maine, as it did in 2009, when it helped overturn a gay-marriage law.

... Voters in North Carolina and Minnesota, which don't allow gay marriage, will vote on whether to place an opposite-sex definition of marriage in their constitutions. In New Hampshire, the Republican-controlled legislature is preparing to vote on a bill to repeal the state's gay-marriage law, which the previous, Democrat-controlled legislature passed in 2009.

Video: Meghan McCain Calls Santorum's Marriage Views "Gross"

She made these comments on MSNBC during the New Hampshire primary campaign.

No word on her views on Gingrich or Romney's marriage views:

Baptist Press: 2012 a "Make or Break" Year for Marriage

Michael Foust of the Baptist Press:

...Conservatives -- who warn that religious liberty will take a hit if those bills pass -- also could win in each of those states. Washington and Maryland allow citizens to place recently enacted laws directly on the ballot, and New Jersey's governor has threatened to veto that state's bill while also urging it to be placed before voters. Elsewhere, North Carolina and Minnesota citizens will consider constitutional amendments defining marriage as between a man and a woman. In New Hampshire, the Republican-controlled legislature is poised to vote on a bill that would reverse that state's gay "marriage" law. When including Maine, voters in at least six states could have their say on marriage.

All total, the action in the states could make gay "marriage" a major presidential campaign topic.

"[It is] already shaping up to be a 'make or break' year for marriage in America," Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage, a traditional group, wrote in an email to supporters.

Republicans Say WA Democrats Are Ignoring Key Task of Budget to Push SSM

The Seattle Times:

Republican lawmakers Wednesday decried what they say is slow action on progress to close a $1 billion budget gap.

In a meeting with reporters, House and Senate GOP leaders said too much time has been spent on hot-button issues from gay marriage to plastic-bag bans to abolishing the death penalty. The legislative session is nearly a quarter of the way complete and there is no timeline on when a draft budget will be circulated, they said.

"I do not want to get to the end of the 60-day session potentially looking at a special session and then just wasting more taxpayer dollars," said Sen. Janea Holmquist Newbry, R-Moses Lake. "So let's get to work."

Lawmakers returned Jan. 9, tasked with addressing a projected deficit of about $1 billion through June 2013.

Gov. Chris Gregoire wants a buffer of several hundred million dollars in case the economy underperforms, meaning legislators will have to make about $1.5 billion in cuts or find new revenue.

WCU Students Stage Drag Show to Oppose North Carolina Marriage Amendment

The Smoky Mountain News:

A student club at Western Carolina University is defending its decision to pair a drag show featuring “kings” and “queens” from across the state with a get-out-the-vote drive aimed at defeating a proposed state constitutional amendment that would ban same-sex marriages.

“We could open up a shelter for puppies and those who hate us would still hate us; that’s no matter what we do, drag show or no drag show,” said Katlyn Williams, 19, a WCU student from Andrews.

More than 1,000 People Flood New Jersey Statehouse for Marriage Debate

Clear proof that the people of New Jersey want to have their say on the issue:

Legislation to allow same-sex marriage in New Jersey cleared the Senate Judiciary Committee tonight after more than seven hours of emotional debate and testimony, setting the stage for a showdown in the full Senate.

... The 10:06 p.m. vote came after more than 1,000 people flooded the Statehouse today in an effort to sway lawmakers’ opinions on one of the most controversial bills of the decade.

... During the marathon hearing, opponents — including Orthodox Jews and Catholic officials — argued that same-sex marriage would damage religious freedom and is not needed because the state already permits civil unions. Supporters -- including civil rights leaders and legal experts -- said gay couples do not have equal rights without being allowed to marry.

... Josh Pruzanzsky, executive director of the Agudath of Israel of New Jersey, said same-sex marriage legislation "would endanger religious freedom, inhibit free speech and undermine the preferred status of marriage. It would convey a social message that is deeply offensive to many residents of the state of New Jersey and lead to further erosions in the traditional conception of family."

... It’s unclear if the measure has enough support to pass the entire Senate, where it could reach the floor for a vote as early as Thursday. -- Statehouse Bureau

NJ Assemblyman: "Crazies" Make Passing SSM a "Hard Dynamic"

Someone should tell this Trenton Democrat that it's not nice to call so many New Jerseyans "crazy" for disagreeing with his views on gay marriage.  But he's right about the politics:

...across the country, the right to same-sex marriage has been granted mostly by court decision or legislative action. Same-sex-marriage advocates noted that almost every one of more than 30 ballot questions on gay rights had failed to broaden them; even in 2008, when the country elected a Democratic president, voters in California approved Proposition 8, banning same-sex marriage.

“It’s a hard dynamic to win at the polls,” said Assemblyman Reed Gusciora, a Trenton Democrat who is openly gay. “At the end of the day, gays are a minority and they can’t match the crazies, who are out there and really motivated to vote against it.” -- The New York Times

Attorney Says School Threatened, Punished WI Boy Who Opposed Gay Adoption

Todd Starnes at Fox News commentary:

A 15-year-old Wisconsin boy who wrote an op-ed opposing gay adoptions was censored, threatened with suspension and called ignorant by the superintendent of the Shawano School District, according to an attorney representing the child.

Mathew Staver, the founder of the Liberty Counsel, sent a letter to Superintendent Todd Carlson demanding an apology for “Its unconstitutional and irrational censorship and humiliation” of Brandon Wegner.

Wegner, a student at Shawano High School, was asked to write an op-ed for the school newspaper about whether gays should be allowed to adopt. Wegner, who is a Christian, wrote in opposition. Another student wrote in favor of allowing gays to adopt.

... Staver said what the school system did next was absolutely outrageous. He said the 15-year-old was ordered to the superintendent’s office where he was subjected to hours of meetings and was accused of violating the school’s bullying policy.

“The superintendent called him ignorant and said he had the power to suspend him,” Staver said. “He’s using his position to bully this student. This is absolutely the epitome of intolerance.”

Staver said the boy’s parents were never notified.

At one point, Staver said the superintendent gave him a chance to say he regretted writing the column.

“When Mr. Wegner stated that he did not regret writing it, and that he stood behind his beliefs, Superintendent Carlson told him that he ‘had got to be one of the most ignorant kids to try to argue with him about this topic,’” Staver said.

At that point, Staver said the superintendent told the boy that “we have the power to suspend you if we want to.”

The superintendent allegedly told Wegner that he was personally offended by Wegner’s column.

2012 Could Make or Break Gay Marriage! NOM Marriage News, January 26, 2012

NOM National Newsletter

My Dear Friends,

This Baptist Press story is right on the money: "2012 could be make or break year for future of gay marriage."

So much is happening.

First, nationally. As I told the press after the roller-coaster South Carolina primary, "It is now clear that the Republican Party will nominate a candidate who is strongly committed to preserving marriage as the union of one man and one woman."

With your help (thank you!), "We have succeeded in making the preservation of marriage a key issue in this race."

The Associated Press notes: "With a flurry of coast-to-coast developments this week, same-sex marriage is back in the political spotlight and likely to remain there through Election Day as a half-dozen states face potentially wrenching votes on the issue."

And they quoted me saying this: "Brian Brown predicts his side will continue its winning streak and prevail in any state referendums that are held this fall. 'There's a myth that history is on a trajectory moving toward same-sex marriage.There is no such momentum.'"

I don't know if you've had a chance to encounter Thomas Peters, the young writer and activist who is organizing a Next Generation for Marriage project for NOM (more on that down the road). But on the NOM blog he asks a very astute question.

"If gay marriage is so popular...why didn't the President endorse it in his State of the Union address?"

Pres. Obama didn't even mention his ongoing effort to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act.

Gay-marriage activists want to tell us that gay marriage is popular, and that DOMA is unpopular. "What does the President know that gay marriage activists don't want to admit?" Peters asks.

You and I know the answer to that question.

So does Assemblyman Reed Gusciora, a Trenton Democrat who told the New York Times why he is unwilling to let the people of New Jersey vote: "It's a hard dynamic to win at the polls," adding, "At the end of the day, gays are a minority and they can't match the crazies, who are out there and really motivated to vote against it."

It isn't very kind or respectful for a sitting politician to describe so many New Jerseyans as "crazy" for disagreeing with his position, but it's increasingly par for the course.

That kind of rhetoric is one reason the American people are digging in their heels and rejecting gay marriage when they are trusted with the choice at the polls.

Monmouth University pollster and political scientist Patrick Murray admitted as much to the Philadelphia Inquirer when he said that Democrats "don't want to put it on the ballot and have it fail because that would probably end the debate over this for quite some time.... It really is a very complex calculation that supporters of gay marriage would have to do before deciding to put this on the ballot." After the experience in California, Democrats may be wary of polls showing popular support for gay marriage.

The Inquirer noted, "Gay marriage there was banned, Murray said, in part because it was opposed by socially conservative African Americans who turned out in large numbers to vote for Barack Obama."

Meanwhile, gay-marriage activists—in the middle of a huge economic and budget crisis—have launched a calculated effort to try to quickly push gay marriage bills through the legislatures in Washington state and New Jersey.

Why? As I told the Philly Inquirer, "There's one reason why they're putting this bill forward: They want to raise money on it."

Our own Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse of the Ruth Institute testified in Olympia, WA, as the Seattle Times reports: "Marriage attaches mother and fathers to their children and to one another."

As Christopher Plante added: "This is a decision to be left to the people."

Here you can see Christopher Plante fighting back on the Christian Broadcasting Network against 70 big-city mayors pushing for gay marriage.


NOM today released a statewide survey which shows Washington voters are not in favor of redefining marriage and want the Legislature to be working on other problems.

"Governor Gregoire is leading legislators off a political cliff with her focus on redefining marriage in Washington," I told the press. "Having approved civil unions, voters do not support redefining marriage and clearly do not want legislators doing so."

In fact, when reminded that Washington State has a civil union law for gay couples, 57% of voters say it is not necessary to redefine marriage. 72% of voters think state lawmakers should work on other issues rather than same-sex marriage. A nearly identical number—71% of voters—believe the people should decide the marriage issue; only 9% think legislators should decide the matter.

The survey found low job approval for both Governor Gregoire and the state Legislature. More people view Gregoire's job performance as only fair or poor (56%) as compared to excellent or good (34%). The numbers are even worse for the Legislature—66% say their job performance has been only fair or poor while just 17% say they have done an excellent or good job.

NOM has promised at least $250,000 to defeat any Republicans who vote for gay marriage, but let me tell you, the Democrats are going to face some pretty cranky voters too if they keep pushing pet personal priorities over the people's business.

Meanwhile, New Jersey's plain-spoken, outspoken Gov. Chris Christie astonished the media—but not us!—by doing what an honest leader should do, following through on his campaign promise and reiterating that he would veto a gay marriage bill.


Gov. Christie says, emphatically,

"I support giving New Jerseyans the ability to give voice to their support or their opposition to this issue.

"...I would hope that the legislature would be willing to trust the people, the way I'm willing to trust the people.

"This issue is too big and too consequential not to trust the people who will be governed ultimately by any change in law or maintenance of the current law."

We salute Gov. Christie and echo his call to trust the people of New Jersey with a decision so profound as the fundamental revision of our marriage laws.

Can you take a moment to thank him here?

When our guys stand tall for marriage, they need to hear our appreciation!

Thank Christie here!

Thank you for all you make possible.

Please pray for me, and for all the people and pastors and other leaders who are fighting for marriage in the states of Washington, New Jersey, Maryland, New Hampshire, and Minnesota—and all across this great nation.

Together, we will never stop speaking the truth in love, and fighting for God's truth about marriage.

God bless you,

Brian Brown

Brian S Brown

Brian S. Brown
National Organization for Marriage


P.S. Now is not the time to stand on the sidelines! When you give to NOM you are playing a role in the crucial, ongoing fight for the truth about marriage and family life. You are helping to secure marriage for your children, your grandchildren, and the generations to come.

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Washington Survey Shows Strong Opposition to Same Sex Marriage; Voters Want the Right to Decide Marriage Issue

Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Anath Hartmann at 703-683-5004

"Washington voters deserve the right to vote on marriage just as voters in 31 other states have been able to do." — Brian Brown, NOM President —

Olympia, WA—The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) today released a statewide survey that shows voters are not in favor of redefining marriage and want the Legislature to be working on other problems.

"Governor Gregoire is leading legislators off a political cliff with her focus on redefining marriage in Washington," said Brian Brown, NOM's president. "Having approved civil unions, voters do not support redefining marriage and clearly do not want legislators doing so."

When reminded that Washington State has a civil union law for gay couples, 57% of voters say it is not necessary to redefine marriage. 72% of voters think state lawmakers should work on other issues rather than same-sex marriage. A nearly identical number -71% of voters—believe the people should decide the marriage issue; only 9% think legislators should decide the matter.

"If the Washington Legislature wants to change the definition of marriage, which 57% of voters oppose, NOM calls on them to give this decision to voters. Thirty-one other states have been able to vote on the definition of marriage, and Washington voters deserve the same opportunity," Brown said. "Voters have made it clear in this survey that they alone should decide the marriage issue—not legislators. Let the people vote."

The survey found low job approval for both Governor Gregoire and the state Legislature. More people view Gregoire's job performance as only fair or poor (56%) as compared to excellent or good (34%). The numbers are even worse for the Legislature—66% say their job performance has been only fair or poor while just 17% say they have done an excellent or good job.

To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray, [email protected], (x130) or Anath Hartmann, [email protected], (x105) at 703-683-5004.


To view the entire survey, please click here.