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The Money Behind the 2004 Marriage Amendments

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Abstract:

The spate of 2004 ballot measures that banned same-sex marriages in fully one-fourth of the states generated more than $13 million in campaign contributions. Slightly more than half of the money came from just three groups of contributors: organizations and individuals supporting gay and lesbian rights; conservative Christian organizations, such as Focus on the Family and the Family Research Council; and organized religion.

Together, contributors in those groups poured nearly $7.2 million into the marriage debate in 13 different states: Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon and Utah. Four of the states with amendments on the ballot were considered to be among the 20 or so battleground states in the presidential contest - Arkansas, Michigan, Ohio and Oregon.

Supporters of the measures raised slightly more than opponents' $6.8 million compared with $6.6 million. However, the election results were entirely one-sided. The constitutional amendments passed in every state, some by margins of 3:1.