Saturday, October 24, 2009

Ref. 71 RoundUp: Anti-LGBT Forces Want Special Rights; Audio of Opposition Robocall; Starbucks Speaks Up

Opposition Wants Special Rights To Fight LGBT Rights

The Daily News reports that the groups fighting Washington state's LGBT population from receiving the new "everything but marriage" domestic partnership rights, is suing the state to get out of campaign donation limitations.
A Lynnwood-based organization that opposes the state's domestic partnership law and is working to defeat Referendum 71 has filed suit in U.S. District Court in Tacoma seeking to circumvent campaign contribution limits of $5,000 and to keep secret the names of those who make smaller donations.

State campaign finance laws require campaigns to disclose names and addresses of those who donate over $25 to a campaign. Campaigns must also include employer names and addresses as well as the occupations of donors contributing over $100. The laws limit to $5,000 contributions from businesses and individuals made within 21 days of the general election.

The attorney for the Family Policy Institute of Washington, which filed the lawsuit through its newly formed Family PAC late Wednesday, acknowledged that there are substantial contributions in the offing that the campaign wants to accept but can't because of the limits.
So just like many other anti-LGBT groups suing states because they don't like their laws (see here, here and here), the newly formed Family PAC wants a temporary restraining order to lift the $5,000 limit because they think they're worthy of it.

Another lawsuit surrounding Referendum 71 comes from the Reject 71 campaign itself. They have appealed all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court because they don't want to disclose the signatures that got the referendum on the ballot.

These groups who are trying to strip the LGBT population of existing rights claim victims of discrimination and fear boycotts and backlash. Something we have experienced for hundreds of years. And then they cry foul?


Or, as Mike Tidmus says, "These sniveling cowards seem to think they’re entitled to special protections and special rights. Don’t they get that we live in a democracy and every statement we make, every position we take, every dollar we donate and every vote we cast has consequences...?

"Those of us who opposed Prop 8 took our knocks. We saw an increase in hate crimes directed against the LGBT community, we saw bashings, and we saw the leadership of the Yes on 8 campaign attempt to extort money from No on 8 donors whose names they found on public donor rolls."

Amen, Mike.

Opposition Robocall

This is the most recent robo call going out to Washington resident. See their ridiculous TV ads.

Karen Ocamb's Amazing Article, "URGENT! Gays could lose Domestic Partnerships in Washington state Nov 3."

Reporter Karen Ocamb at LGBT POV has done an amazing job of painting the bigger, national picture and the importance that Referendum 71 plays.

Here's an excerpt:
While the eyes of the LGBT nation are now focused on President Obama signing the federal hate crimes bill and on beating back the Religious Right Prop 8 sequel in Maine – same sex couples in Washington state are sweating bullets that in just over a week they might lose the simplest of family relationship protections – Domestic Partnerships.

At a Hollywood fundraiser for Maine Tuesday night thrown by Oscar-winning producer Bruce Cohen and political consultant Chad Griffin – the team behind the Ted Olson-David Boies federal challenge to Prop 8 – Cohen said the two challenges are important part of the national movement towards full equal rights:

“When [the federal challenge to Prop 8] makes it up to the highest court that it ends at – how many states have marriage is going to be a huge part of that victory. So it very much impacts all of us in the state of California and everyone concerned with Prop 8 what happens in Washington state [where an initiative to keep Domestic Partnerships is on the ballot] and in Maine on Nov 3 – and in the District of Columbia where we could have marriage recognized from all over the world – and in New York state where marriage may pass in the next couple of weeks.”

But it’s an off-year election and Washington is a largely vote-by-mail state where a lot of people might not understand that Approve Referendum 71 means a vote to keep a law already passed by the legislature . . .
Read the full article at LGBT POV.

Starbucks Endorses Approve Referendum 71 Campaign

SLOG blogger Dominic Holden broke the news:
Seattle-based caffeine cartel Starbucks gave its blessing this week to approve Referendum 71, thereby recognizing that gay couples deserve the same morning coffee rights as their groggy, heterosexual counterparts. In a statement, the company said that approving R-71 "ensures that basic benefits and important protections are not taken away from committed couples, so they are able to take care of each other, especially in times of crisis." Starbucks wants voters to approve the measure "because it is aligned with our business practices, providing domestic partner benefits, and one of our core values of treating people with respect and dignity.”
Though Starbucks has not donated to the campaign, an anonymous spokeswoman told Dominic that they told all their 3,000 Seattle employees at their headquarters and more at the 667 statewide stores. With Seattle being the most supportive of LGBT rights, this is a big boon.

"That is just as valuable as when an organization communicates its endorsement to members," Approve R-71 campaign manager Josh Friedes told Dominic. "We are just delighted to have their endorsement along with Microsoft, Boeing, Nike, and many other companies that employ large numbers of people in the Pacific Northwest."

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