Mormons Don’t Like to be Singled Out
Last Friday, in a highly unusual move, the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) issued a press release out of the Church’s Newsroom in Salt Lake City, Utah. President Thomas S. Monson called for “Respect, Civility in Public Discourse” www.newsroom.lds.org/ldsnewsroom/eng The very next day the New York Times broke a story on the Church’s involvement in the campaign entitled “Mormons Tipped Scale in Ban on Gay Marriage.” It detailed church campaign plans from a leaked memo. The memo discussed training and guidelines for Church members to follow in order to pass California’s Proposition 8. It’s quite a story by Jesse McKinley and Kirk Johnson http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/15/us/politics/15marriage.html?pagewanted=1&sq=mormon%20church&st=nyt&scp=3
President Monson asks demonstrators to respect their places of worship. These places of worship were serving as campaign headquarters just two weeks ago. We have heard that this is where Mormon Church members would go to get lawn signs, campaign materials, and voter lists for walking and calling registered voters. All summer and fall they were using these places of worship to actively campaign against Prop 8, and often directly from the pulpit.
They produced 14 campaign commercials, 2 web sites, ran phone banks from Utah and Idaho, sent direct mail, ran a speakers bureau, printed campaign literature, organized thousands of precinct walks and even transported people to California to work on their behalf.
In a weekend newspaper interview, Yes on 8 campaign manager, Frank Schubert said that Mormons contributed $15 to $20 million to the Yes on 8 campaign. If that’s what he’s admitting, we’re sure that it’s way more. Mormon Church leaders know to the penny how much their members gave to Yes on 8. The Wall Street Journal reported that they had church members send their donations to a post office box so they could track how much LDS money was coming in. It was then bundled and sent directly to the campaign. That was spelled out in Mark Schoof’s Wall Street Journal story of September 20, 2008. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122186063716658279.html?mod=googlenews_wsj
So with all these memos and admissions and all the evidence that we presented in our filing of last week, we are hopeful that the California Fair Political Practices Commission will launch an investigation to determine why the Mormon Church did not file reports of their numerous non monetary contributions to Yes on 8. A Church spokesman said that they filed four reports with the California Secretary of State detailing all these non-monetary expenditures. We could only find one. It was filed 4 days before the election on November 1, 2008 for $2,864.21. They did an awful lot of campaigning for only $2,864.21.
Demonstrations, Rallies and More Demonstrations
Last Saturday, there were hundreds of demonstrations held in cities and towns all over the county in support of full equality for gays and lesbians. This was the largest outpouring of support in our long civil rights movement. Many of these cities had never had demonstrations on LGBT equality before. From the coverage we saw and the demonstrations that we attended, they were very mixed with gay and straight supporters of same-sex marriage all standing side by side. At the San Jose Rally, a speaker told everyone to go to the web site of Californians against Hate https://californiansagainsthate.com to view our Dishonor Roll of over 800 contributors to Yes on 8 who gave a minimum of $5,000. We will continue to update the list as we get more information, and we have received quite a bit of new information via email from many supporters. Thank you for the tips. Our web site, which averaged about 350 visitors a day, has jumped to up to over 13,000 visitors per day! That keeps us very busy around here.
National Media Converage of our FPPC Filing
It was the filing heard ‘round the world. We’ve seen over 100 television, radio, magazine, newspaper and blog reports on the sworn complaint that Californians Against Hate filed against the LDS Church last week. The coverage included; NPR, Time Magazine, USA Today, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, San Diego Union-Tribune, The Salt lake City Tribune, The Deseret News and lots more. We have most of the links up on our Blog http://californiansagainsthate.blogspot.com
Here are links to some of the magazine and newspaper coverage:
Time Magazine — http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1859323,00.html?iid=tsmodule
Los Angeles Times – http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/front/la-me-boycott14-2008nov14,0,4880904.story
New York Times — http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/us/AP-Gay-Marriage-Mormons.html?_r=1&ei=5070&emc=eta1&oref=slogin
Salt Lake Tribune — http://www.sltrib.com/ci_10982571
Deseret News — http://deseretnews.com/article/1,5143,705262980,00.html
USA Today — http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2008-11-13-backlash_N.htm
Washington Post — http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/11/14/AR2008111403508_pf.html
San Diego Union-Tribune — http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/state/20081115-9999-1n15prop8.html
Mormons Are Resigning the LDS Church Over Prop 8
There is a new web site that began in July that allows Mormons to quiet the Church publically over all its support for Prop 8. It’s called Signing for Something http://signingforsomething.org/blog It is very interesting. Check it out.
More Reporting Questions on Yes on 8 Donors
One of our crack researchers discovered that several major contributors to Yes on 8 had put down “retired” or “homemaker” under occupation when in fact they appear to be employed. In many instances these contributors show up as owners or CEO’s of their companies. Also, when checking more closely there is an unusually high number of homemakers making 5 and 6 figure contributions to Yes on 8. Could it be that their husbands did not want their names connected to the Yes on 8 campaign?
Steve Largent’s Wife Contributed $2,000 to Yes on 8
A good example of spouses contributing is the $2,000 contribution of Terry Largent. She is the wife of former Congressman and Seattle Seahawks football star, Steve Largent. Steve Largent is now the President & CEO of CTIA The Wireless Association http://www.ctia.org CTIA is the Washington, DC based international lobbying and trade association for all the major wireless phone companies. The Largents live in Arlington, Virginia, and Steve joined the Board of Directors of James Dobson’s Focus on the Family in 2003 after he left Congress.
Wife of Sharp Healthcare’s CEO Gave $2,350 to Yes on 8
Mike Murphy heads San Diego’s largest hospital and biggest employer. His wife Sandra gave 4 separate contributions to Yes on 8 between March 10 and October 24, 2008 totaling $2,350. She listed her occupation and employer as “none.” Maybe this was done in order to not draw any attention to her husband.
James Dobson’s Focus on the Family Lays Off 202
Focus on the Family, based in Colorado Springs, Colorado was one of the leaders in the qualification of Prop 8 last winter and spring. They gave $539,643.66 and another $83,000 in non monetary contributions. They just cut 20% of their workforce. There is an excellent story on what is happening with this mega-ministry in today’s Colorado Independent by Cara Degette http://coloradoindependent.com/15287/after-pumping-money-into-prop-8-focus-on-the-family-announcing-layoffs?disqus_reply=3867526#disqus-claim
Please Support Our Crusade
We have never asked for financial support since our inception in July of this year. I pledged that we would self fund our small volunteer operation, and not take any resources away from the No on 8 campaign. And we did just that. Utilizing volunteers, we accomplished much. We certainly drew a lot of attention to all the major donors to Yes on 8. We conducted demonstrations in San Diego, Rancho Santa Fe, Los Angeles, New York and Washington, DC. We called a few boycotts, continuously maintained our now famous Dishonor Roll of all contributors to Yes on 8 of $5,000 and over, and talked bluntly about the hate that was coming our way from so many of these big contributors. We tracked all the money coming in every day for 4 months, and were the first to discover the Mormon money pouring into the campaign coffers of Yes on 8 to the tune of $514,000 per day during most of August and September. Now we need your help to pursue our activities, including our filing before the California Fair Political Practices Commission.
We hope to continue our efforts and act as a truth squad to track the organizations and individuals who are out to deny us our civil rights and full equality.
Now, for the very first time, we turn to you for financial help. Please visit our web site https://californiansagainsthate.com and on the top right hand corner is a red DONATE button. Just click on that, and you will be taken directly to pay pal. It’s so easy to help us, and 100% of your contribution will go to direct action. We are all volunteers working out of our homes.
Won’t you please send $10, $25, $50, $100 or more to help us with all the expenses that we face? I promise you that we will work hard and continue to expose those who are out to hurt us.
Thank you in advance, and stay tuned for lots more from Californians Against Hate!