The Rise and Fall of the National Organization for Marriage

It’s practically impossible to be more conservative Republican than NOM

June 12, 2012, by Jeremy Hooper

The National Organization For Marriage and the organization's new political director, Frank Schubert, will be guiding the marriage campaigns in all four states where we are on the ballot this fall. They will work diligently to convince local voters that they are completely non-partisan, and that their interest is in simply "protecting marriage." They won't put their conservatives ties front and center, because doing so would be alienating for voters with no interest in promoting the most far-right special interest groups working today.

But to see what really makes NOM tick, check out the following flyer. Not only is it for an event honoring three of the most conservative Republican politicians in the country (Santorum, Huckabee, and Grassley), but the NOM-sponsored soiree is also co-sponsored by Act Right, the Republican fundraising outlet setup by NOM's Brian Brown, as well as Citizens United, the organization behind one of the most partisan moves in 21st century politics:


Couple this with NOM's stated desire to "sideswipe Obama"—a vow they made, by the way, only months after the President had taken office—and you really see what this organization is all about. Like Rove (and Mehlman) before them, NOM is guiding the conservative movement's "marriage as a wedge issue" arm, hoping it'll help elect far-right Republicans. They are duping Democrats, Independents, and moderate Republicans in the marriage states into believing that their interests begin and end at the marriage amendment on the ballot, when they are really working twice as hard to elect extremely conservative candidates at both the state and federal level.

As we move into these battles in Minnesota, Maryland, Maine, and Washington, I'm really counting on the local media to help voters understand which organization is pulling the strings on the anti-equality side and what their outsized influence means in terms of the 2012 election. In taking on marriage, NOM is working from a deeply religious (largely Catholic) place, something the organization has become a little more willing to own over the past year or two. Now it's time we start forcing NOM to acknowledge the big GOP elephant that they are both riding and feeding!