The Human Rights Campaign reports that the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) is sponsoring tonightâ€™s CNN GOP debate (at 8:00pm ET/5:00p PT) as part of their participation in the Southern Republican Leadership Conference (SRLC).
The Southern Poverty Law Center calls NOM â€śone of the most visible and active anti-gay marriage groups,â€ť and says the organization propagates â€śknown falsehoodsâ€ť about LGBT people.
CNN will air the debate tonight at 8pm ET. NOMâ€™s sponsorship represents their latest attempt to make their anti-marriage equality views â€“ which do not enjoy broad public support â€“ appear mainstream. In fact, itâ€™s the latest in a string of national moves the anti-gay group is undertaking to make marriage equality more of a wedge issues with voters than it really is. A recent Facebook/Politico poll found that an overwhelming majority of South Carolina primary voters â€“ nearly 76 percent â€“ say the economy is far and away their top concern in Saturdayâ€™s vote. Nationally, a majority of Americans â€“ 53 percent â€“ support marriage equality. While a majority support marriage equality, polling shows that many are more worried about jobs and the economy, Medicare and social security, and education.
South Carolinaâ€™s primary is just one of many states where NOM is trying to appear more mainstream, despite pushing messages that arenâ€™t palatable to majorities of Americans. They are actively engaged in fighting marriage equality in states like New Jersey, Washington and Maryland, and are vowing retribution against lawmakers in New York who supported last yearâ€™s marriage equality victory in the Empire State.
Interestingly, NOM makes no effort to be â€śfairâ€ť to all the GOP candidates. In a fundraising email NOMâ€™s Brian Brown says:
â€ś2012 is already shaping up to be a “make or break” year for marriage in Americaâ€ť and continues with support for the more â€śmoderateâ€ť Romney and clear opposition to Ron Paul:
During the run-up to the Iowa Caucus, NOM stepped up to make sure Iowans knew the facts about the candidates’ positions on marriage.
And the result was a huge victory for marriage champions Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum in a virtual tie for first place.
In New Hampshire recently, candidates stood boldly for marriage and religious liberty. Speaker Gingrich put it most forcefully when he jumped in to the conversation to point out the media’s bias in covering the subject:
You don’t hear the opposite question asked: Should the Catholic Church be forced to close its adoption services in Massachusetts because it won’t accept gay couples? …Should the Catholic Church find itself discriminated against by the Obama administration on key delivery of services because of the bias and bigotry of the Administration? The bigotry question goes both ways… and none of it gets covered by the media.
(To watch the video of the candidates’ comments in New Hampshire, check out the NOM Blog here).
And as for the one candidateâ€”Texas Congressman Ron Paulâ€”who refuses to support marriage? His campaign falters whenever NOM spreads the truth about him!
Because the fact is, Ron Paul holds extremely radical views on marriage which, if implemented, would destroy traditional marriage in America (see our website WrongOnMarriage.com for specifics).
When asked if same-sex marriage should be legal, he responded “sure.”
And he’s repeatedly said that the federal government should offer zero recognition of any marriages at all!
[W]e cannot back off…not one single inch.