Unfortunately, due to opponents of marriage equality, we were forced yet again to raise millions to protect our rights. But hey, we're sure good at it. Here's the campaign's press release:
Portland, Maine (Tuesday, October 13, 2009)---NO on 1/Protect Maine Equality announced today that nearly 12,000 donors have contributed nearly $2.7 million to its campaign to defeat Question 1 and allow all committed Maine couples to marry and be treated equally under the law. NO on 1 also announced that since July 1, nearly 2,000 Mainers have actively volunteered on the campaign, engaging in activities ranging from phone banking, to leaflet drops, to door-to-door canvassing.
In addition, more than 8,000 Mainers have signed up to volunteer with the campaign. An additional 120 people from out of state, or less than one percent of the total volunteer base, have committed to come to Maine for the final days of the campaign. To date, NO on 1 volunteers have made more than 270,000 phone calls and knocked on more than 13,500 doors throughout the state. And in the last 10 days, over 1,600 Mainers signed up for more than 2,100 volunteer shifts on the campaign.
In terms of financial contributions, nearly half of the money raised came from supporters in Maine, with most donors, both in state and out of state, contributing during the Third Quarter (Q3) which began July 6th and ended September 30th.
“This level of support is gratifying and it’s from every corner of Maine and from people across the country who care deeply about treating all families equally,” said Jesse Connolly, NO on 1 campaign manager. “Although ours is primarily a grassroots campaign, with Mainers talking to Mainers about equality, it costs money to run a field program and it’s costly to rebut the distortions in the Question 1 campaign’s ads.
“What we've seen is that as more and more people have focused on Maine, more and more people have wanted to participate, whether that’s writing a check or staffing a phone bank,” added Connolly.
The NO on 1 campaign, which released its campaign revenues and expenditures in accordance with Maine campaign finance laws, offered these highlights from Q3, the latest reporting period:
-- Nearly 50 percent of the money raised in the Q3 came from Maine donors and, in fact, 80 percent of the contributions raised off line, through fundraising events and individual contributions, came directly from Mainers.
-- 97 percent of the individual donors made their contributions in the third quarter. (11,723 donors contributed in Q3, with 11,976 total donors since the campaign began). In fact, 94 percent of the nearly $2.7 million YTD was raised during Q3.
-- 29 donors gave more than $10,000 for $875,000 in Q3. Of those 29 individuals, 18 donors -- or 62 percent -- are Maine residents who collectively contributed $515,000 of that total.
-- While the NO on 1 average online donation is $95.45, the campaign's volunteer field team has collected more than 1,200 contributions with an average donation of $17.25.
-- The NO on 1 Finance Committee, a group of 38 Maine residents, is responsible for raising more than $470,000 of the total.
-- There were 29 NO on 1 fundraising events in the Q3, with only three of those conducted out-of-state in Washington D.C., Los Angeles and Miami.
-- The NO on 1 campaign only solicited funds during the last two months of the Second Quarter, raising $143,290 from 373 donors.
-- $537,393 in both in-kind and cash donations was contributed by 13 state and national organizations which support marriage equality.
Read the full report here.
The opposition, Yes on 1, is FREAKING OUT over the fact that they have been beaten at the fundraising game. AND they complain about the out-of-state money (which is only 50%) and then talk about the out-of-state Prop 8 people guiding their campaign!
Dear Yes on Question 1 supporters,
We knew we were being vastly outspent from the fact that the No on 1 campaign was able to air their advertising upwards of 50% more than our Yes on 1 campaign ads. We had a clue that the other side was awash in money because of the dozens of paid staff members they have on board their campaign. But we never dreamed the situation was as dire as it is: our opponents have raised approximately $1.6 more than we have and are conducting a financial assault on the institution of marriage. Overall, they have raised an astonishing $2.7 million from gay marriage supporters across the country!
We are in desperate need of additional financial support or we risk losing because our opponents are attempting to buy themselves an election – and destroy the institution of marriage in the process.
The latest financial reports detailing the amount of money that has come in for both sides of the Question 1 campaign shows that our committee, Stand for Marriage Maine has raised approximately $1.1 million while our opponents have raised about 2.5 times more than we have. This is an astonishing financial advantage our opponents have amassed. It explains why they were able to be on the air with ads nearly three weeks before our campaign was able to begin advertising. It explains why they can afford to operate multiple campaign headquarters. It explains how they can afford a statewide staff of field organizers and operate dozens of phone banks. And it explains why the institution of marriage is teetering on the ledge – at risk of being forever redefined in Maine. Our opponents are raising money from across the country from gay marriage supporters who see an opportunity to win their first victory at the ballot box in the history of the nation.
We cannot let them get away with this. We cannot let homosexual marriage activists from virtually every state in the nation decide that marriage will be redefined in Maine. Please don’t let our opponents succeed with this financial assault on marriage. Will you please, right now, make a generous donation to our campaign?
The good news is that even though we are being vastly outspent, we have run a financially prudent and efficient campaign. Our polling shows that we are dead-even right now and in a good position to win the campaign. Voters recall our advertising more so than the ads from the other side. We are defining Question 1 on our terms. And we know that we will win when voters come to understand the many consequences to families, children and society as a whole if same-sex marriage is legalized in Maine.
The only way our opponents can win is if they try to confuse the issue by running millions of dollars in advertising with false claims that we are lying about the consequences of legalizing homosexual marriage. They don’t want to defend the teaching of homosexual marriage to young children in public schools, so they are spending millions to try to deny and deny. They don’t want to talk about individuals, small businesses and religious groups being sued for refusing to support homosexual marriage, so they are spending millions to calls us liars. And they don’t want to explain to voters why the law they sponsored and advocated strips from Maine’s marriage statutes the interests of nurturing children, so they are spending millions making the oxymoronic claim that we are trying to “harm children.” We are trying to prevent 5, 6 and 7 year old children from being taught about homosexual marriage in school against the wishes of their parents and we are accused of “harming children?” If it weren’t so serious, this would be like describing an ‘Alice in Wonderland’ situation.
But it IS so serious. Our campaign strategists, who helped pass Proposition 8 in California and who have won dozens of initiative campaigns around the country, tell us that we cannot win if we continue to be outspent as we have to this point. It is amazing that we are still in a dead heat. We’ve had to cut our voter contact program dramatically. Every week we’ve cut our advertising budget. We’ve eliminated a statewide bus tour that we had planned for next week. We’ve had to cut back on staffing. And collateral materials. And direct mail. Our grassroots organizing has suffered.
Yet still we are in a position to pass Question 1. This is a testament to your strong support and to the common sense of average Mainers who know in their heart that marriage is worth preserving.
But let’s not fool ourselves. We have to raise more money, right now, if we are to pass Question 1. Please make a sacrificial contribution today, as if the survival of marriage depended on it. Because, quite literally, it does.
The campaign reports made available today lay bare the falsehood of our opponents’ claim that they have a homegrown, grassroots Maine-based campaign. The truth is their support has come mostly from the gay activist political elite from all corners of the nation, including Hollywood, Colorado, New York, Massachusetts, and the Democratic national political machine, Act Blue.com. They have raised money from virtually every state in the nation.
Why are homosexual marriage activists pouring money into Maine? Because never before have they been able to convince voters to approve homosexual marriage. Voters in thirty states have considered this issue, and in all thirty states they have voted to preserve traditional marriage and reject homosexual marriage. But our opponents think they can win in Maine. We are a small state. Raising millions of dollars to spend here will make a big difference. Recruiting hundreds of volunteers to come to Maine will make a big difference. And if they can win in Maine it would be historic. They will use a victory to attempt to convince the media that the mood of the nation has changed and that it is time for America to also abandon the God-created idea of marriage.
Will you let them get away with it?
So much is riding on the Question 1 election. We have three weeks left. We have three weeks to close the financial deficit we are in. We have three weeks to add to our advertising campaign. We have three weeks to buttress our grassroots operation. We have three weeks to talk to Maine voters about the importance of traditional marriage, and the consequences of abandoning it in favor of homosexual marriage.
But all this must start right now – today – and it must start with you and me. We’ve learned an important lesson. Our opponents are determined to do whatever they can to secure victory. We must respond, and respond now. It is up to you. There is no one but you. The only question is, will you be there for us when the fight for marriage needs you the most? We pray you will be.
Thank you for all your efforts to defend God’s precious institution of marriage. We look forward to your continued help. We are counting on you at this critical time.
Stand For Marriage Maine
View their report.
Contribute to the campaign's moneybomb donation drive. October 15th midnight is the deadline to raise $1.1 million! Because you know after this diatribe from the Yes on 1 campaign, the opposition's wallets are about to open up.