Press Room

July 06, 2004

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HRC Launches Ad Campaign to Thwart Federal Marriage Amendment

TV, Print, Online Ads Part of Multi-Million Dollar Campaign to Influence Leaders, Activate Grassroots

WASHINGTON - A multi-media ad campaign was launched today by the Human Rights Campaign as part of the effort to defeat the Federal Marriage Amendment. A vote on the FMA is expected next week in the U.S. Senate.

"The Federal Marriage Amendment is unnecessary, discriminatory and undermines the Constitution," said HRC President Cheryl Jacques. "We are delivering this message directly to our elected leaders and encouraging the millions of fair-minded Americans who oppose this amendment to contact their senators today."

Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., has announced his intention to bring up the divisive Federal Marriage Amendment for a vote during the week of July 12. HRC's new ad campaign began running this week and will continue through next week's debate and vote, urging leaders not to write discrimination into the U.S. Constitution.

The new television ad - "Preserve and Protect" - uses archival footage of presidents taking their inaugural oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. Presidents Franklin Roosevelt, Dwight Eisenhower, John Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton are all shown. The ad asks viewers to tell President Bush to preserve the Constitution, not undermine it, and then guides them to www.hrc.org.

The television ad is available online and will run in the Washington, D.C. market July 7 through July 13 on FOX News Channel and CNN. A second television ad - "Priorities" - will run next week in targeted states reminding viewers that the Senate should be focusing on issues like the deficit, job loss, health care and terrorism.

"Beyond television advertising, we are using online advertising as one way to target our natural allies," said Jacques. "It is critical that we reach out beyond the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community to other allies and fair-minded Americans who oppose writing discrimination into the Constitution."

The debate on the Federal Marriage Amendment comes when many other issues such as jobs, health care and the economy are priority issues for many Americans. Online ads urging the Senate to stop wasting time on the FMA will appear on the following sites: Mother Jones, Utne, Alternet, Salon, Slate, New York Times, CNN and the Washington Post, as well as regional newspaper sites in Florida, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Oregon and California, and more than 20 progressive blogs.

"We will also continue to educate and activate our community," said Jacques. "Already we have broken records with over 200,000 e-mails to Congress on this issue alone."

Ads will appear in GLBT publications in targeted states encouraging the GLBT community to take action and contact their member of congress. Ads will appear in New England in Bay Windows and In Newsweekly, in Ohio in Gay People's Chronicle and Outlook News, Philadelphia Gay News and the Washington (D.C.) Blade. Online ads will also run on gay.com, planetout.com, and 365gay.com.

The Human Rights Campaign is the largest national lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender political organization with members throughout the country. It effectively lobbies Congress, provides campaign support and educates the public to ensure that LGBT Americans can be open, honest and safe at home, at work and in the community.

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