California | Gay Marriage | News | Proposition 8

'No on Prop 8' Committee Members Made Public

Noon8As anger over the handling of the failed campaign against Proposition 8 persists, blogger/activist Michael Petrelis fired the latest finger-pointing salvo late yesterday, publishing the names of those on the "No on Prop 8" executive committee, information that has not been widely available. The names were also posted on the L.A. Weekly website.

"No on 8" Executive Committee, Principal Officers, according to FPPC Form 410, the Statement of Organization Recipient Committee for the campaign:

Geoff Kors, executive director, Equality California;
Lorri Jean, chief executive officer, Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center;
Kate Kendell, executive director, National Center for Lesbian Rights;
Michael Fleming, executive director, David Bohnett Foundation;
Marty Rouse, national field director, Human Rights Campaign;
Heather Carrigan, ACLU of Southern California;
Oscar De La O, Beinestar Human Services in Los Angeles;
Sue Dunlop, Los Angeles;
Maya Harris, ACLU of Northern California;
Don Howes, Los Angeles;
Dennis Herrera, City Attorney of San Francisco;
Dr. Delores Jacobs, chief executive officer, San Diego LGBT Community Center;
Joyce Newstadt, San Francisco;
Tawal Panyacosit, director, Asian and Pacific Islander Equality in San Francisco;
Rashid Robinson, Los Angeles;
Kevin Tilden, communications/political consultant, San Diego;
and "No on 8" treasurer, Steve Mele, founder of ML Associates in West Hollywood.

Equality California will be hosting an "Equality Summit" on January 24. According to Rex Wockner, "The meeting of more than 250 California GLBT activists at the Los Angeles Convention Center will focus on strategizing and organizing to win back same-sex marriage in California."

SummitThe "Equality Summit" has already come under criticism for plans, which were later dropped, to block media access to the proceedings.

Today, the Bay Area Reporter revealed that over half of "Equality Summit" organizers failed to make any donation to "No on Prop 8" during the campaign: "An analysis of data filed with the secretary of state's office indicates that 60 percent of the 57 members of the planning committee for this weekend's Equality Summit did not make any financial contributions to the efforts to defeat Prop 8 last year. The summit, to be held at the Los Angeles Convention Center, is meant as a gathering of community leaders and others committed to winning back marriage equality in California to share information and resources, and to plan next steps."

Names of All 16 Members of No on 8's Executive Committee Made Public [petrelis files]
Queer Town: "No on 8" Executive Committee Revealed [la weekly]
Summit planners stingy with No on Prop 8 dollars [bay area reporter]

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  1. I think the news that 60 percent of the conference attendees didn't donate money to the No on 8 campaign may be the bigger story here. That's about the most hypocritical thing I've ever heard, and should disqualify them from having a hand in the conference. No wonder they didn't want any media scrutiny. Fuck them.

    Posted by: Paul R | Jan 22, 2009 2:44:00 PM

  2. Sorry, not "attendees"---planning committee. Which is even worse.

    Posted by: Paul R | Jan 22, 2009 2:45:34 PM

  3. Gheeezuz H. Keerist Gay-Americans are poor losers. Of course it's horribly wrong that a civil right enjoyed by the majority is put up to a vote, whether that civil right should be extended to a minority.

    Aside from that obvious glaring injustice, it's a sign of a minority group's relaxed view of life (and the injustices inflicted on them) when they turn on each other and start ripping each other apart. Mistakes were made, but so were great efforts to defeat the Proposition. Now is the time to get smarter, get stringer, get better, get involved.

    Many Gay-Americans don't get involved in politics because they don't like it, but they're more than happy to tear others apart for their involvement. What's wrong with this picture?

    Posted by: Sargon Bighorn | Jan 22, 2009 2:46:29 PM

  4. Get stronger...

    Posted by: Sargon Bighorn | Jan 22, 2009 2:47:50 PM

  5. "An analysis of data filed with the secretary of state's office indicates that 60 percent of the 57 members of the planning committee for this weekend's Equality Summit did not make any financial contributions to the efforts to defeat Prop 8 last year."

    I'm not surprised that 40% of No On 8's Executive Committee members did not financially contribute. Saddened, but not surprised. Prior to Election Day, I sent out a couple of email blasts politely asking personal friends to donate, even $5.00, to No On 8. The majority (50+%) of my straight friends happily gave. My gay friends? With the exception of a couple, it was *crickets*. No response. When Prop 8 passed on November 4th, my gay friends were outraged. I asked what they did to fight it and was met with alot of blank stares. I'd be angry if I wasn't so damned depressed by the apathy of the gay community on the whole. It's not that giving money to No On 8 would have necessarily defeated the proposition, its the lack of participation in the fight for equality by those affected most that disgusts me. If every gay (open and closeted) person in the U.S. gave $1.00 and made a few phone calls, I believe we wouldn't be in the demoralizing position we find ourselves today. Have gay folk been beating into submission? Is internalized homophobia that deep seeded? $700.00 for tickets to the Sticky and Sweet tour? YES! $1.00 in support of equality and dignity? Ho-hum.

    Still, onward and upward! We will win. I just hope that some of my friends have learned their November 4th lesson and come prepared for the next round.

    Posted by: JohnInManhattan | Jan 22, 2009 3:00:57 PM

  6. 60%. It's worse than I thought.

    Posted by: JohnInManhattan | Jan 22, 2009 3:03:12 PM

  7. At least the people on this list TRIED to do something, the sad thing is there is ONLY 16 people on the list. Shouldnt that list be something like 16,000 or 1.6 million considering how many fags live in Cali. Then at least we might have been able to compete with the well organized Mormons.
    As for contributions....not all of us are financially able to contribute, thats why I, and other like me donate our time, to me its more precious and more worthwhile than writing a fat check to show off my wealth.

    Posted by: PaulinLA | Jan 22, 2009 3:13:21 PM

  8. This is shameful. These are supposed to be leaders?

    I do not have a lot of money, but I gave what I could. In addition I donated two shirts I designed to a fund-raiser to fight Prop 8. (We raised over $500) My husband and I also asked people to give to Marriage Equality in lieu of gifts to ourselves when we got married last summer.

    It disgusts me that so many lgbt people in California did not even bother to vote. That does not cost anything. And now to find out that most of the "leadership" did not even bother to send in a red cent, this is an outrage.

    By the way, I live in Michigan.

    Posted by: Voet | Jan 22, 2009 3:27:23 PM

  9. Interesting that nobody from PFLAG was included in this group.

    Posted by: Adam | Jan 22, 2009 3:29:24 PM

  10. Johninmanhattan,

    Fifty-percent of eligible gay voters in California sat home allegedly on election day. Think about those wasted votes. How many of those same people were only too happy to show their outrage then.

    Does anyone think that if Asian-Americans, for instance, were going to see their right to marry be stripped from them, that 50% of their number would have sat at home? (People really should research the history of racism against Asians in California.)

    It's time to move on and focus on the next battle. For all of the faults of the No on 8 leadership, at least they got off their butts and did take action. How many other people can say the same?

    Posted by: noah | Jan 22, 2009 3:33:21 PM

  11. Didn't Lorri Jean give in excess of $100K of her own money?

    Posted by: eileen | Jan 22, 2009 3:34:06 PM

  12. The more that comes out about this, the more it makes sense as to why they could not get out the message.

    And, Noah, that number is truly disturbing at best and one I had not heard of.

    Posted by: Tim | Jan 22, 2009 4:07:44 PM

  13. Noah


    Let alone all of the unregistered voting age gays in CA. The money thing isn't an issue for me since in the end it really isn't money that would have won it for us. GROUND GAME GROUND GAME GROUND GAME!

    Posted by: jimmyboyo | Jan 22, 2009 4:45:42 PM

  14. you have two names wrong "Rashid Robinson" and "Don Howes" they should be Rashad Robinson and Dan Hawes.

    two complete idiots.

    Posted by: Cist J | Jan 22, 2009 5:14:17 PM

  15. you have two names wrong "Rashid Robinson" and "Don Howes" they should be Rashad Robinson and Dan Hawes.

    two complete idiots.

    Posted by: Cist J | Jan 22, 2009 5:14:33 PM

  16. you have two names wrong "Rashid Robinson" and "Don Howes" they should be Rashad Robinson and Dan Hawes.

    two complete idiots.

    Posted by: Cist J | Jan 22, 2009 5:16:12 PM

  17. So there was a committee that was suppose to "bring it all together"? Who knew!

    This NoOn8 committee was not a very organized, not to mention committed to the NO ON 8 given their lack of contributions to the cause.

    I gave and also tried to help man the spanish-speaking phones. I never got a call back or email reponse after many calls to them.

    We lost for several reasons. Yes I understand the Mormon church gave most of the $$ for YesOnH8. But the committee could have done a better job exposing them and also getting people like me the information needed for us to help.

    And yes, many gays are to blame for not doing something BEFORE election time.

    Posted by: FunMe | Jan 22, 2009 5:21:42 PM

  18. Underscores that both the HRC and ACLU are spineless when it comes to gay rights.

    Posted by: blog automatique | Jan 22, 2009 5:42:43 PM

  19. I'm not sure they should HAVE to give money if they are giving of their time. Some people want to help, but don't have money to spare, so they give of their time, which is just as valuable. Maybe I don't fully understand who the people are who make up this group...Maybe they are all wealthy and that's why they're being criticized for not giving money? Still, I think if one of them had given, say, $50, they'd be judged for "only" giving $50. Just my 2 cents.

    Posted by: Sam | Jan 22, 2009 6:12:09 PM

  20. In doing some research, I am not so sure the HRC has our best interests at heart. There seems to be some ties between that organization and the Republican party which I find questionable given the party's platform on gay issues. Maybe, just like Washington, the organizations that we thought were working for our rights have become so out of touch and integrated into the political machine that its time to come up with something new.

    Posted by: Paul | Jan 22, 2009 6:19:33 PM

  21. Of course fifty per cent of the gay vote stayed home on election day. We're just as apathetic as any other minority. But it's obviously deeper than that... Marriage doesn't matter to a significant portion of this so-called community. That shouldn't matter, though, to the principle behind THIS particular circumstance, and indicates that there's no real lgbt community, and it's a disservice to the truth to continue to tout this myth.

    It's individuals acting as individuals fighting for rights that serves to create the illusion of cooperative strategy-- an incidental byproduct of people coming together. Don't wait to become a part of a group, or think that by giving money to your local lgbt political advocacy groups, you're doing ANYTHING. You're not.

    And please, most people don't know what the HRC does because most of the lobbying that occurs is done behind the scenes and isn't publicized. It does serve a purpose, and though there is a RING of truth to the charges of classism, racism and misogyny, they are not even approximations of the reality.

    Posted by: TANK | Jan 22, 2009 7:12:16 PM

  22. These people are our heroes! Sometimes it's easy to just write a check (certainly not always). But successful result or not, rolling up your sleeves and getting dirty is a true gift from the heart and soul. Former Peace Corps volunteer here with my $.02 (although I gave a bit more to No on H8). If at first you don't succeed... and now we go forward with hindsight on our side.

    Posted by: Castaway | Jan 22, 2009 7:38:03 PM

  23. Could someone please explain to me how we could possibly know what percentage of gay people in CA voted or didn't vote.

    Has anyone really thought about how impossible a task it would be to determine this when no one really knows how many gay people live in CA in the first place? We don't even know how many OUT gay people there are in the state so how could we possibly know what percentage of gay people voted?

    Posted by: Zeke | Jan 22, 2009 8:30:18 PM

  24. Oh my ...

    1) zeke check your census forms -- two males cohabitating at the same address might qualify here -- besides it took Facebook about 30 secs to start feeding me gay ads -- privacy and marketing both ain't what they used to be -- I am sure lots of people know which voters are gay -- just exit polls might ask now.

    2) not this sad role call of supposed leaders again --we should never trust this group with our money and effort ever again

    3) I volunteered one day a week to this campaign from before Labor Day straight through to the morning of the election and I have no conviction that marriage is right for gay men -- well at least not for me not now -- but I did the work in the hopes that I would not be disappointed in myself if the vote went against us... and that came to pass.

    I am sitting the next few rounds of this pig tussle out....

    Posted by: David B. | Jan 22, 2009 9:19:10 PM

  25. The notion that 50% of glbt voters stayed home on election day is a myth. Why do some of you insist on repeating it? Why do so many of you believe it without any facts to back it up?
    I challenge anyone to provide a credible source for this 50% BS.

    Posted by: Jeffrey | Jan 22, 2009 11:32:45 PM

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