HRC Blog

Marriage Equality Donors in 2012 Dwarfed Those Who Opposed It

HRC parade flag; marriage equality; same-sex marriagePost submitted by Kevin Nix, Former HRC Campaign Media Director

The number of contributors who gave in support of marriage for gay and lesbian couples was thirteen times greater – about 133,000 compared to an estimated 10,500 - than those giving financial resources to oppose marriage equality. That’s according to a new analysis HRC released today.

Polls consistently show – USA Today/Gallup and ABC News/Washington Post being the latest examples - that a majority of Americans support committed gay and lesbian couples getting a marriage license.  

HRC obtained financial contribution data in each of the four states through the Maine Ethics Commission, Maryland Board of Elections, Minnesota Campaign Finance & Public Disclosure Board and Washington Public Disclosure Commission. Supplemental data was obtained from each of the pro-marriage equality ballot committees to account for small donors not required to be itemized by law.  Anti-marriage equality donor information was aggregated from currently available public reports and estimates of non-itemized contributions.

Pro-equality groups raised more than $34 million in the four states, mostly from small donors. Anti-marriage equality campaigns raised $12 million, of which nearly two-thirds ($8 million) came from just three sources: the National Organization for Marriage, the Catholic Church and its affiliate the Knights of Columbus.

NOM, the largest funder in all four states to defeat marriage equality, saw a one-third decline in contributions for 2011, with two donors providing 75 percent of its funding, according to tax returns obtained last month by HRC.

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