Freedom to Marry Pledges $2 Million to Marriage Equality Efforts, Starting with DE, HI, IL, MN, NJ, and RI

Freedom to Marry has announced they'll spend $2 million in 2013 to advance marriage equality efforts around the country, Buzzfeed reports:

FreedomtomarryAccording to a statement provided to BuzzFeed, Freedom to Marry is starting the 2013 effort — called the Win More States Fund — by investing $800,000 in the six states where marriage bills are being debated: Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Minnesota, New Jersey, and Rhode Island.

"Building on our 4 for 4 ballot victories in November, Freedom to Marry is calling on supporters to join us in continuing the momentum and winning still more states in 2013. With the clock ticking on the Supreme Court's review of marriage cases, we want to make as much progress as we can – and with battles already underway now in state capitals, we all need to put our money where our momentum is," Evan Wolfson, founder and president of Freedom to Marry, said in a statement.


  1. Interesting priorities says

    Those are revealing priorities. All but one of those states has some sort of civil unions; all but one of the states that has civil unions has all-but-the-word-marriage-style civil unions. So this big push seems designed not to secure additional on-the-ground rights for real gay people, but to change the word used by the state in application of those rights. I’m not sure I’d spend the money the same way.

  2. Mark says

    Regarding the post by “Interesting Priorities”- you’re right that most of those states extend some rights to LGBT couples, but civil unions are not the same thing as marriage. And even if one were content with civil unions, what other states do you go to? There are a limited number of states in a position to legalize SSM at the time. Legislatures in all of those states are likely to take the issue up this year if they haven’t already, so it makes sense for Freedom to Marry to target them.

    I’d love to make a push for gay marriage in all states, but it just isn’t going to happen yet.

  3. Interesting priorities says

    Well, Colorado comes instantly to mind. Then there’s the interesting case of Wyoming, which has a history of leadership in not-dissimilar areas (e.g., votes for women) and a thick, and broadly genuine, libertarian streak. (I think there was some progress there this year — not a lot, but a good first step.) Then perhaps Pennsylvania, New Mexico … and I agree about Minnesota. I grant you that (beyond Colorado) most of the low-hanging fruit has already been plucked, and so the next campaigns for real rights-changes may take some time. But I think I’d invest in those processes now rather than spending valuable resources for a symbolic name change. I take your point, and I appreciate that you take mine. Just a difference in priorities, or tactics or whatever.

  4. Chitown kev says

    I suppose that one push that could be made is getting some states to delete the language in their state constitutions defining marriage as one man-one woman OR deleting language that outlaws even civil unions and domestic partnerships.

    and did Oregon simply tell the Freedom to Marry people to butt out? I would think that Oregon would be a top priroity as opposed to Minnesota.

  5. Mary says

    I see Interesting’s point. Same-sex couples in states that have no protection for their relationships at all would ideally want immediate action regardless of whether it was marriage, civil unions, DP’s or whatever. But the long-term success of marriage equality depends on the cause being seen as inevitable. I believe (just my opinion, of course) that creating the feeling of inevitability for gay marriage is most important. This is why I think advocates should press for marriage in as many states as they believe they can achieve it soon. Tackling the problem of overturning all the state constitutions that forbid SSM will require a lot of effort and the pro-equality movement will be in a better position strategically when states increasingly have either marriage equality or nothing. Opponents of SSM might delay full equality longer by conceeding on the issue of DP’s or civil unions. This will just make more work in the long run for gay activists.

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