Campaign in Support of Oregon’s Anti-gay ‘Religious Freedom’ Ballot Measure Suspended

The anti-gay Oregon Family Council along with Friends of Religious Freedom have announced they will not be moving forward with IP 52 – the proposed ballot measure that would allow businesses in the state to turn away LGBT people as an “exercise of religion.”  

OregonThe AP reports:

The Oregon Supreme Court approved the ballot language on Thursday. The campaign suspended its efforts 24 hours later, saying the ballot language as written by the office of the Oregon attorney general was unacceptable.

The campaign sought to portray the issue as one that frees business owners from having to violate their religious beliefs by abiding by Oregon law.

“But the certified ballot title does not acceptably state this,” Friends of Religious Freedom said in the release issued late Friday afternoon. “Indeed, it states it as intolerant instead of protecting equal rights of conscience.”

The ballot language approved said a "Yes" vote "creates 'religious belief' exceptions to anti-discrimination laws," language the measure's supporters said unfairly prejudiced voters against them.

Mike Marshall, campaign manager for Oregon United Against Discrimination, released the following statement:

“Thanks to the incredible outpouring of early opposition to this measure—more 462 organizations and leaders, including 190 businesses and 167 faith leaders have joined the Oregon United Against Discrimination coalition—Oregonians have realized that this measure would allow businesses to discriminate against people because of who they are and whom they love. And discrimination is just wrong.”

“We are thrilled that the Oregon Family Council has suspended their IP 52 effort, likely realizing Oregonians wouldn’t support a measure that would allow discrimination.”


  1. AggieCowboy says

    We at Friends of Religious Freedom are disgusted that we are not allowed to violate state laws that requires the language of a ballot measure to read exactly as to what our proposed law to legally violate state anti-discrimination laws would do.

  2. Ben M says

    Yes well, just like NOM knows it loses if it talks about ‘banning gay marriage,’ the OFC see the writing on the wall re: this issue. If they cannot have Orwellian control of the language, they lose.

  3. says

    By accurately describing their bigotry the state has led these fundies to realize they just can not sell their Jesus-flavored bigotry like they used to.

    The poor dears, objective reality is really oppressing them.

  4. Bill says

    Something similar happened with Proposotion Eight, although they did not stop the campaign as a result.
    Since Prop 22 (Prop 8’s predecessor) had been declared unconstitutional before the ballot was printed, our public officials changed the wording to reflect reality – that the initiative removed a right. They still won, primarily (it seems) due to a large influx of cash during the last few weeks of the campaign.

    Given that, my guess is that blaming the government in Oregon is simply a face-saving ploy because they know they are likely to lose.

  5. Gay Guy says

    Yes, telling the truth seems to unfairly prejudice voters! I guess we want to make a big hole on all civil rights laws (not just “gay”) that says you can ignore them if you can invent a “religious” reason to discriminate!

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