HRC, Courage Campaign Take Aim at NOM

WASHINGTON – As the National Organization for Marriage, or NOM,
embarks on a fall election campaign to defeat candidates who support
full marriage equality, the Human Rights Campaign, in collaboration with
the Courage Campaign, unveiled “NOM Exposed,” a live, interactive
website which reveals NOM's deep anti-gay affiliations, its long
connections to the Mormon and Catholic churches and its quest to keep
voters in the dark about its financing.  The site is at

At the same time, HRC announced the formation of the NOM Project to
follow the ongoing political work and propaganda of NOM as it attempts
to influence elections and legislative campaigns across the country. 
The project will be led by Kevin Nix, a longtime LGBT advocate and
political and media consultant.  A former communications director at
both Servicemembers Legal Defense Network and the Family Equality
Council, Nix also worked at Media Matters in the 2004 presidential

"NOM and its leaders project a message of tolerance yet NOM Exposed
shows that behind the well-trained talking points is an anti-gay animus
and moneyed connections that it is loath to reveal," said HRC President
Joe Solmonese.  "This website is not static.  Working with the Courage
Campaign, we will be watching the campaign trail and documenting NOM's
political buys and bedfellows. We will connect the dots for voters."

NOM Exposed builds off the success of Courage Campaign’s NOM Tour
Tracker – a blog of first-hand accounts, photos and videos chronicling
NOM’s “2010 Summer for Marriage—One Man, One Woman” bus tour of 17
states.  The Courage Campaign deployed three staffers to follow NOM’s
tour and file reports from the road, generating more than one-million
page views and more than 15,000 comments.  During the course of the
tour, federal courts declared two of NOM’s top policy priorities –
California’s Proposition 8 and the Federal Defense of Marriage Act –

The NOM Tour Tracker showed NOM’s summer tour consistently outnumbered
three-to-one by pro-equality counter rally participants organized by
Freedom to Marry and state LGBT organizations.  It also showed NOM staff
attempting to limit public access to their events and NOM’s sparse
supporters doing everything from speaking in tongues, to comparing
marriage equality to genocide and advocating the murder of LGBT

“The NOM Tour Tracker unmasked the so-called 'National Organization for
Marriage' as a small and secretive fringe group devoted to attacking
families, spreading lies, and sowing fear,” said Courage Campaign
Founder and Chairman Rick Jacobs.  “With a majority of Americans and a
growing number of conservatives now standing up for equality, NOM
Exposed takes this important work a step further by bringing to light
the nefarious connections, shadowy finances, and dubious ethics at the
heart of NOM’s brand of political extremism.  We are proud to work with
the Human Rights Campaign on this important initiative.”

NOM Exposed, the result of several months of research and collaboration, reveals the following:
    * At a time of the country's greatest economic crisis since the
Great Depression, NOM's financial growth has been explosive.  NOM has
amassed huge resources – estimated to reach or exceed $10M in 2010 –
from modest beginnings in 2007.
    * NOM is a highly secretive organization that tries to not only hide
the identity of its political donors from the voting public in state
after state, but operates in a way to discourage people from knowing who
its key players and associates are.
    * NOM has deep connections to the Catholic Church hierarchy, to the
Mormon Church, to evangelical right-wing pastors and churches and to
those who have a long history of anti-gay rhetoric and activity.  These
are individuals and organizations which not only oppose same-sex
marriage, but oppose domestic partnerships, civil unions, hate crimes
protections and even fertility treatments for women because some of
those women could be lesbians.
    * Since 2008, NOM and its allies have engaged in a radical,
nationwide plan to flout long-established campaign finance disclosure
laws.  This is nothing short of a strategic, coordinated plan to hide
NOM's political activities from voters.  This effort has prompted
several state investigations and resounding legal defeats for NOM.

In addition to the rich archive of information, NOM Exposed features a
blog where the latest on NOM’s activities will be tracked.  LGBT leaders
will also contribute guest posts to the blog with their own research
and experiences with NOM.  Freedom to Marry, which organized the Summer
For Marriage tour in response to NOM, has the inaugural guest post up

"NOM Exposed gives voters a comprehensive look at an organization that operates largely in secret, yet plays a super-sized role in campaigns from California to Maine," added Solmonese. "By releasing this site and dedicating resources to NOM Project, we will confront this web of secrets and lies wherever NOM seeks to spread its political propaganda."