What If NOM Threw A Party And No One Came?

by Ianthe Metzger

WASHINGTON –– Tomorrow, the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) is promising that countless Americans fed up with the progress of LGBT equality will descend on Washington D.C. in droves. Today, new research from the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) proves they’re full of it.

On the eve of NOM’s “March for Marriage 2014,” an HRC survey of 1,200 registered voters conducted June 6-10, 2014 by Republican pollster Alex Lundry of TargetPoint Consulting found that the number of Americans strongly opposed to national marriage equality has dipped to 28 percent. And even among that group, there is no appetite for NOM’s radical and exclusionary brand of anti-LGBT rhetoric. Echoing other recent polling, support for marriage equality is at 56 percent. Click here to review a copy of the polling memo. 

When asked what they would do if the U.S. Supreme Court struck down discriminatory marriage bans across the country, Americans opposed to marriage equality were subdued. “I will not like it, but I will do nothing,” one said. “I would be very disappointed, but I would accept the law,” said another. All in all, only 3 percent of opponents mentioned that they would protest the decision in any form.

Another metrics asked respondents to put their money where their mouth is. When asked how much they would be willing to pay to ensure that their personal views on marriage equality became the law of the land, the difference between supporters and opponents was massive. Nearly 4 out of 10 opponents of marriage equality were unwilling to pay anything at all to stop its progress. Even those who were willing to donate were stingy. The average opponent of equality was willing to give $2,600, while the average supporter was willing to chip in about $8,500. When the contributions of all respondents were tallied, supporters of equality contributed $3 million, while opponents coughed up a paltry $600,000.

This all must come as disappointing news to NOM head Brian Brown, who recently told The Associated Press that NOM “won’t go away,” in the event of a sweeping pro-marriage ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court.

In response to the new research, HRC Vice President for Communications Fred Sainz released the following statement.

“We’ve always known that NOM’s radical rhetoric doesn’t represent the views of the American people, but NOM can’t even claim to represent the views of the opponents of marriage equality. No matter how many fake mustaches they wear and no matter how many wardrobe changes they make at tomorrow’s rally, Brian Brown can’t fake a movement. They are the proud leaders of a hateful handful -- the last gasp of a reactionary rump.”

Last week, HRC shined the spotlight on the parade of horribles who will take the stage at NOM’s rally tomorrow alongside Mr. Brown. Among them is Bishop Harry Jackson, Jr., who compared gay marriage to Adolf Hitler and a satanic plot; Dr. Jim Garlow, who said gay marriage would lead to “enslavement” of marriage opponents; Ryan Anderson, a Heritage Foundation fellow who compared gays and lesbians to pedophiles; and Reverend Bill Owens, Sr, who compared marriage equality to bestiality. Also speaking at the rally will be San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone. HRC, and other LGBT and civil rights advocates, urged Archbishop Cordileone to pull out of the rally. Instead, the Archbishop decided to double-down on discrimination and called for a federal marriage amendment despite the overwhelmingly number of lay Catholics (over 62% and growing) that support marriage equality.

With friends like these, no wonder NOM feels the need to rebrand. Documents recently obtained by Jeremy Hooper of HRC’s NOM Exposed reveal that NOM founders—along with Archbishop Cordileone—have begun convening secret meetings focused on “developing and deploying an action plan to protect marriage and preserve religious liberties.” Called ‘The Princeton Group,’ it’s unclear what exactly this shadowy crack team is doing that NOM isn’t currently telling its donor(s) it is already doing.

Until we can find out, HRC will continue to keep tabs on NOMs unique brand of hate. As for the rest of the American people? Well, they’re getting bored.


The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against LGBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.


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