With $500,000 Washington Pledge, Freedom to Marry Investment in ‘12 State Campaigns Hits $3 Million

8/13/2012

Early Funds Help Lock In TV Buys in Competitive Markets

 

Press Contact:

Nicole Collins Bronzan
Communications Director, Freedom to Marry
646-375-2044
nicole@freedomtomarry.org

NEW YORK, NY – With its latest $500,000 pledge to match donations to the campaign for marriage in Washington State, Freedom to Marry, the campaign to win marriage nationwide, has met its initial 2012 goal of raising and investing $3 million in three key states where marriage is on the ballot in November. Freedom to Marry now intends to continue working to raise more funds toward the more than $10 million still needed by the three campaigns.

Freedom to Marry’s latest investment will match donations dollar for dollar until Aug. 31 and is aimed at bringing in an additional $1 million for Washington United for Marriage. Through its Win More States Fund, Freedom to Marry has been steadily raising funds and channeling them strategically into state campaigns; meanwhile, Freedom to Marry has also been deeply embedded in the campaigns themselves, providing strategic guidance and helping build the framework for every aspect of the advocacy work in the states.

The Win More States Fund, announced in March, set an original goal of raising $3 million to invest in five battleground states for the entire campaign season. This most recent cash infusion meets that goal in Maine, Minnesota, and Washington alone, more than two months earlier than originally projected.

“Early and strategic support shows that our movement has evolved into a sophisticated campaign equipped to win at the ballot box in November,” said Evan Wolfson, founder and President of Freedom to Marry.  “In an election season where candidate campaigns and Super PACs are snapping up television airtime, Freedom to Marry is especially pleased to be able to provide crucial early funding to support TV buys and other ways of making the case for the freedom to marry.  We will continue to raise dollars and channel them into campaigns to ensure we get family stories in front of the voters and make the most personal and powerful case for why marriage matters.”

“We encourage people across the country to join Freedom to Marry in making a difference in these ballot-measure battles, by donating time, speaking out, and contributing,” Wolfson added.  “We will make sure every dollar gets put to the best possible use, turning the momentum for marriage into votes for victory.”

Because of competition for airtime, costs to reserve television are rising quickly.  In the Seattle market, prices have nearly doubled over the last few months.  In the market covering Portland, Maine, they’ve increased by about 30 percent. 

"It's hard to overstate the impact of this match by Freedom to Marry," said Washington United for Marriage Campaign Manager Zach Silk. "Early money has never been more important than in 2012, and this much-needed contribution will go a long way in our fight for marriage in Washington State."

Freedom to Marry is working alongside partners such as the Gill Action Fund and HRC to continue bringing new and needed support into the priority battlegrounds. Through the Win More States Fund, it has so far brought in contributions from 43 states and from donors across the political spectrum, including prominent Republicans such as Paul Singer.  The money raised has helped Freedom to Marry fund:

  • Airtime for campaign TV spots in Maine, Minnesota, and Washington in the face of steep price increases.
  • Deployment of effective public education efforts, including television spots featuring real families and personal stories in the three states.
  • State-of-the-art new media tools and tactics to engage voters and advocates.
  • Field campaigns in all three states to support one-on-one conversations with voters about the importance of the freedom to marry for all committed couples.

"Since Day One, Freedom to Marry has been the perfect partner in our campaign to win marriage at the ballot in Maine," said Mainers United for Marriage Campaign Manager Matt McTighe. "From strategic guidance to a powerful infusion of funds, Freedom to Marry has been involved in every element of the work. We absolutely would not be making the strides we are without their partnership."

"In addition to the incredible financial support underlined by meeting this goal so early, Freedom to Marry has brought a wealth of knowledge and know-how to our efforts to make marriage a reality for every Minnesotan," said Richard Carlbom, Campaign Manager of Minnesotans United for All Families.

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Freedom to Marry is the campaign to win marriage nationwide. We are pursuing our Roadmap to Victory by working to win the freedom to marry in more states, grow the national majority for marriage, and end federal marriage discrimination. We partner with individuals and organizations across the country to end the exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage and the protections, responsibilities, and commitment that marriage brings.