Wealthy Republican Donors Supporting New York Marriage Campaign
May 19, 2011
Welcome support for the freedom to marry --in the form of contributions-- is flowing from an unexpected source: "conservative financiers and and wealthy donors to the Republican Party," The New York Times reported.
In a departure from other states, where a largely liberal base has bankrolled campaigns to end marriage discrimination, New York's coalition of LGBT advocacygroups have garnered approximately two-thirds of their funds from conservative donors. Noteworthy donors to the campaign include hedge fund manager Paul E. Singer, a major backer of the Republican Party, who has personally contributed over $400,000. Singer has a gay son who married his husband in Massachusetts.
Dubbed a "sea of change," these wealthy New Yorker's argue that their support of the freedom to marry is "consistent with the conservative principles of personal liberty and small government."
Meanwhile, New York's Conservative Party voted last week on a resolution opposing the freedom to marry and summarily threatened to remove any lawmaker who voiced support.
The leader of the New York Independent Party recently announced his support for ending marriage discrimination. With 426,000 members, the Independence Party outnumbers the Conservative Party by 2 to 1.
Lawmakers will be hard-pressed to deny the pressure from conservative donors who have contributed in excess of $1 million in recent weeks to New Yorkers United for Marriage.
Freedom to Marry created New Yorkers United for Marriage with Empire State Pride Agenda, Human Rights Campaign, Log Cabin Republicans, and Marriage Equality New York