All Eyes on Maine

The Advocate
August 5, 2009
As LGBT activists discuss how and when to restore the freedom to marry in California, dramatic events are unfolding on the other side of the country, in Maine, that will greatly affect the fight for marriage rights in California and ultimately across the rest of America. [Link]

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Summer of 2009 an active one for Marriage Equality

The Detroit News
August 5, 2009
Deb Price reviews the summer of 2009, during which Massachusetts has brought "a gem of a lawsuit" against the federal Defense of Marriage Act, former President Clinton has carefully endorsed marriage equality (Evan Wolfson: "President Clinton is Exhibit A in the power of talking with people about our lives - and not writing them off. It shows people can and do move."), President Obama has urged the repeal of DOMA, and much more. [Link]

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Opponents Of Law Honoring Marriages of Same-Sex Couples To Turn In Petitions

WMTW.com
July 31, 2009
Stand For Marriage Maine, the group leading the effort to overturn a state law which honors the marriages of same-sex couples, said it plans to turn in its people's veto petitions Friday. The Secretary of State must then verify those signatures, gathered by drawing heavily on out-of-state contributions and professional signature gatherers. [Link]

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60,000 Mainers sign on to defend marriage equality

Bay Windows
July 30, 2009
Marriage equality organization No on 1/Protect Maine Equality announced today that 60,000 Mainers have signed pledges defending the state’s marriage equality bill. "Volunteers, ready and willing to go door to door and speak neighbor to neighbor to protect marriage equality, are the fuel of our campaign to defeat Question 1," said Campaign Manager, Jesse Connolly. [Link]

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Maine marriage equality group changes name

examiner.com
July 30, 2009
Maine Freedom to Marry formally changed its name on Thursday to "No on 1/Protect Maine Equality." A spokesman for the group said that the name change was necessary so that they could clearly tell supporters that a "no" vote on the November ballot is actually a vote in support of the freedom to marry. [Link]

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Opposition: Pennsylvania group attempts to spread discrimination message in Maine

Maine Freedom to Marry
July 21, 2009
A message from Jesse Connolly at Maine Freedom to Marry:

Last week, we learned that our opposition has funneled more than $240,000 into Maine from out-of-state pro-discrimination groups. Now, we're learning that a Pennsylvania group has come to Maine to spread their anti-equality message in public. Local NBC affiliate WCSH6 is reporting that a Pennsylvania organization called the "American Society for the Defense of Family, Tradition, and Property" is touring around the state trying to gain public support for taking away marriage equality.

I'm wondering why the anti-equality groups in Maine have to rely on out-of-state organizations not only to fund their efforts, but now to stand on street corners with signs. These out-of-state groups are descending upon Maine just like they did upon California during Prop 8, but the people of Maine are heading in a different direction.
[Link]

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NOM Arrives In D.C. To Try and Keep Discriminatory DOMA

On Top Magazine
July 16, 2009
The nation's most vocal opponent of marriage equality has opened an office in the nation's Capitol to fight for the discriminatory so called Defense of Marriage Act or "DOMA." The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) has been vociferous in its opposition to the freedom to marry victories this spring in Maine, Vermont and New Hampshire. The group says it will use its D.C. office to “stop any attempt to repeal” the anti-gay "DOMA" law which blocks marriages of gay couples from being recognized at the federal level. [Link]

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Catholic Church, NOM (a.k.a. Mormons?) funding anti-marriage effort in Maine, with some help from Fo

AMERICAblog Gay
July 15, 2009
It's time for the gay funders to start chipping in! Maine Freedom to Marry can't be out-fundraised after what we went through in California. Early money matters in Maine, which is a much cheaper state than California. [Link]

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Opponents of Freedom to Marry Take Early Lead in Maine Fundraising

Portland Press Herald
July 16, 2009
The coalition seeking to overturn Maine's marriage equality law with a people's veto has raised more than $343,000 to date, much of it going to professional signature gatherers. The group fighting the people's veto, Maine Freedom to Marry, has raised $138,640, mostly from Mainers - including $50,000 from a Harpswell woman. Organizers on each side and observers watching the campaign expect millions will be raised and spent before the Nov. 3 election. [Link]

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This time, gays are not the target

Portland Press Herald
July 15, 2009

In contrast to Stand for Marriage Maine's secrecy about its office location and high security in its work to exclude gay couples from marriage, Maine Freedom to Marry plans a grand opening of its headquarters in Portland in the next week or two – and the public is invited. Jesse Connolly, campaign manager for Maine Freedom to Marry, said his organization is "totally transparent" and looks forward to operating a "very welcoming and open office." [Link]

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