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Michigan Billionaire Gives $325K to Fight Anti-Gay Marriage Amendment in Minnesota


Jon Stryker, a Kalamazoo-based philanthropist, architect, activist, and billionaire medical supply company heir, has given $325,000 to Freedom to Marry Minnesota's political action committee to fight the anti-gay marriage amendment that will appear on November's ballot there, the AP reports:

MNThe contribution comes a day after the Washington-based Human Rights Campaign pledged to sink $1 million into four states where voters will consider same-sex marriage ballot measures. The group is donating $250,000 to Minnesota opponents of the same-sex marriage ban.

Freedom to Marry is a coalition partner of Minnesotans United for All Families, the main organization working to defeat the constitutional same-sex marriage prohibition.

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  1. But even if the amendment is defeated gay marriage would still be illegal in Minnesota, right?

    Posted by: calvin | Aug 8, 2012 10:17:23 AM

  2. Calvin, yes this is true - marriage equality will still be illegal. It's stupid, but the anti-Gays pushed for this amendment to make it even harder to bring Marriage Equality to the state.

    Posted by: Oz in OK | Aug 8, 2012 10:19:37 AM

  3. OZ yes that is true

    Posted by: wyocowboy | Aug 8, 2012 10:24:15 AM

  4. OZ yes that is true

    Posted by: wyocowboy | Aug 8, 2012 10:24:16 AM

  5. I think these donors should give with the condition that the money will be spend wisely on ads that don't hide same-sex couples or shy away from explicitly saying that this is a matter of human rights. Why donate money to ineffective campaigns that repeat the same failed strategy used in 32 states.

    Posted by: Luke | Aug 8, 2012 10:31:38 AM

  6. "It's stupid, but the anti-Gays pushed for this amendment to make it even harder to bring Marriage Equality to the state."

    Any legal experts here care to elaborate on the potential ramifications if DOMA is overturned and heightened scrutiny is applied? Wouldn't that invalidate each and every state-level anti-gay marriage amendment?

    Posted by: kpo5 | Aug 8, 2012 10:43:38 AM

  7. By what conceivable logic can someone who works to crush human rights be called a philanthropist?

    Posted by: jomicur | Aug 8, 2012 11:04:22 AM

  8. @JOMICUR: He's fighting the discriminatory amendment, not supporting it.

    @KPO5: I'm not a legal expert but the most likely scenario is that Section 3 of DOMA will be found unconstitutional (it already has been several times on the way towards the SC), but that only concerns federal recognition of already married same-sex couples. It wouldn't automatically invalidate the state constitutional amendments or force states to marry same-sex couples. It would make the discriminatory patchwork of marriage laws across the US all the harder to justify, however.

    Posted by: Ernie | Aug 8, 2012 11:21:25 AM

  9. Has gay Republican billionare Peter Thiel bothered to donate any money to fight anti-gay marriage lately?

    Posted by: Pathetic | Aug 8, 2012 12:55:51 PM

  10. @Ernie - Thanks. I didn't know if the various levels of scrutiny (rational basis through heightened) would differently impact the state-level marriage amendments if DOMA is struck down. I agree the SCOTUS will find it unconstitutional - maybe even 6-3.

    Posted by: kpo5 | Aug 8, 2012 1:17:41 PM

  11. All that money for a painful sex act?

    Posted by: Gabe | Aug 8, 2012 5:38:36 PM

  12. @Gabe--Bad experience with your hand?

    Posted by: Stefan | Aug 8, 2012 9:45:54 PM

  13. 325K is chump change to a billionaire. It does tell us that he could easily afford to pay higher taxes to help defend, police and rebuild his nations infrastructure.

    Posted by: andrew | Aug 9, 2012 2:52:48 AM

  14. "A billionaire medical supply company HEIR". He inhereted his money most of which probably came from government funded medical programs. Yep, he is one of those self made men that the republicans like to extoll. He looks old enough to have served in the military during the Vietnam "conflict". Do you think he did? LOL!!!

    Posted by: andrew | Aug 9, 2012 4:35:50 AM

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