Maine gay marriage foes hire Calif. Prop 8 firm

  • metta

    Posts: 39165

    Jun 18, 2009 8:13 PM GMT




    AP



    PORTLAND, Maine – Gay marriage foes in Maine have hired the public relations firm that led the successful Proposition 8 proposal to overturn same-sex marriage in California, while supporters have turned to a legislative aide who led a successful campaign to retain Maine's gay rights law.

    Schubert Flint Public Affairs will provide guidance to the campaign to repeal Maine's gay marriage law, just as it did during the Proposition 8 campaign in California.

    Meanwhile, Maine Freedom to Marry has hired Jesse Connolly, who's taking a leave of absence as chief of staff to House Speaker Hannah Pingree. Connolly, of South Portland, led Maine Won't Discriminate's successful 2005 campaign to keep the state's gay rights law.

    Connolly said his political action committee has no specific fundraising goal but is preparing for a high-profile and costly campaign. There will be direct mail and media advertising, but there will also be plenty of one-on-one conversations with voters, he said.

    "This is going to be a campaign that a lot of folks are going to try to say has national implications," Connolly said.


    Maine was the fifth state to approve gay marriages when Gov. John Baldacci signed the legislation on May 6. New Hampshire later followed suit, so all New England states except Rhode Island now permit same-sex couples to marry. Iowa also allows it.

    In Maine, the law goes into effect in September unless, before then, opponents collect the signatures of at least 55,087 registered voters. If so, the law will be put on hold pending a statewide referendum that could be held as early as Election Day in November.

    Marc Mutty, spokesman for Stand For Marriage Maine and for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland, said petition-gathering is under way with volunteers and paid workers. They're getting a boost from the diocese, which is allowing signature-gathering at churches.

    As for Schubert Flint, the California firm will serve as a consultant but won't play as big a role as it did in the California initiative, Mutty said.

    In California, Schubert Flint helped to overturn a court ruling allowing gay marriage. The initiative, which amended the state constitution to limit marriage to a man and a woman, passed with 52 percent of the vote.

    Jeff Flint from Schubert Flint said his firm will provide some overall strategic advice and campaign management in Maine but won't be sending staff.

    "The campaign is not about Schubert Flint. It's about the definition of marriage in Maine," he said. "Certainly it appears to us that the majority of people, notwithstanding what the Legislature and the governor did, support the traditional definition of marriage and want it to stay that way."

    Connolly said the grass roots campaign that pressed for Maine's law is ready to get back to work to uphold the decision of the Legislature and governor. "No matter who they bring in to run the campaign, we feel we're in a strong position to uphold this law," he said.







    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090618/ap_on_re_us/us_gay_marriage_maine
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 18, 2009 8:17 PM GMT
    Marc Mutty, spokesman for Stand For Marriage Maine and for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland, said petition-gathering is under way with volunteers and paid workers. They're getting a boost from the diocese, which is allowing signature-gathering at churches.


    Aren't churches barred from participating in anything connected to political campaigning which is exactly what the signature gathering is?
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    Jun 18, 2009 8:18 PM GMT
    Maine wont want to be the odd state out in New England....and look like a bunch of neanderthals
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    Jun 18, 2009 9:07 PM GMT
    Caslon11000 saidMaine wont want to be the odd state out in New England....and look like a bunch of neanderthals

    Nor will they like being manipulated by people from out of state. They're fiercely independent, and will deeply resent being told what to think and how to vote by outsiders. If anything, this might backfire on the anti-gay forces, if this issue of interference is stressed by gay marriage supporters.
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    Jun 18, 2009 9:09 PM GMT
    ErikTaurean saidMarc Mutty, spokesman for Stand For Marriage Maine and for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland, said petition-gathering is under way with volunteers and paid workers. They're getting a boost from the diocese, which is allowing signature-gathering at churches.


    Aren't churches barred from participating in anything connected to political campaigning which is exactly what the signature gathering is?

    It should be barred, but it wasn't in California. I doubt the Obama Administration will change the former Bush policy of not investigating this potential violation of the tax code at the Federal level.

    I'm not sure if there's a provision in the Maine State Constitution to prevent it, either. The Federal involvement hinges on the issue of loss of tax exempt status. To my knowledge it's not a crime per se, it can just result in the loss of the tax privilege. I don't think that's ever happened to a major religion in the history of US, and is unlikely to happen in the future.
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    Jun 19, 2009 2:31 AM GMT
    They are on the attack again trying to take away rights where ever they can.
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    Jun 19, 2009 12:22 PM GMT
    After what happened in California, we shouldn't dismiss anything that threatens to take away the civil rights of gays and lesbians. But Maine is not California and I think the dinosaurs will have a much harder time in Maine than they did in California. A lot of people with a lot of know-how when it comes to convincing skeptics that allowing everyone to who wants to to marry will be from Massachusetts, Vermont and New Hampshire will be on hand in Maine.
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    Jun 19, 2009 1:08 PM GMT
    The horrible irony here is that the catholic church, an army of pedophiles are trying to take away the rights of those they consider perverted. If the vatican today were to suffer a horrible terrorist act, I'd drink a bottle of gin tonight to celebrate. And really, I hate gin.
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    Jun 19, 2009 2:14 PM GMT
    Can't wait to see how this gets sorted out.