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Maine Anti-Gay Group Propped Up By Out-of-State Religious Dollars

Last week, I wrote that 86.4% of the $1,193,323.83 raised by Stand for Marriage Maine in the 3rd Quarter of 2009 came from just four sources:

1. The Knights of Columbus
2. The National Organization for Marriage
3. Focus on the Family
4. The Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland

Stand for Marriage Maine is the organization spearheading the YES on 1 referendum movement in Maine, telling Mainers to vote for Ballot Question 1 this November and overturn the state’s new same-sex marriage law.

Further digging last week revealed that in the 3rd Quarter of 2009, more than half of the money raised by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland (money that was overwhelmingly shuttled Stand for Marriage Maine) actually came from out of state. Considering this in addition to the out-of-state nature of the other Big Three religious donors, it seemed fair to conclude that Stand for Marriage Maine is largely propped up out-of-state religious groups.

However, that analysis was incomplete in two ways. First, I only looked at 3rd Quarter 2009 donations; some donations to Stand for Marriage Maine were made in the 2nd Quarter of 2009, when the YES on 1 effort was just starting up. Second, I had only looked at the four largest religious donors; it’s possible there were other religious donors that made meaningful contributions as well.

To get a more complete picture, I’ve gone back to Stand for Marriage Maine’s 2nd Quarter contributions as well as the 3rd Quarter contributions, and I’ve looked at all contributions coming from religious organizations. The following findings agree with and expand upon what we knew before:

1. Religious Groups Overall contributed $1,041,545.20 (or 87%) of the approximately $1.2 million raised by Stand for Marriage Maine.

2. Contributions from Religious Groups either Located Outside of Maine or Using Money Raised from Outside Maine accounted for $859,433.79 (or 72%) of the $1.2 million raised by Stand for Marriage Maine.

3. Contributions from Religious Groups with an Unreported Source (such as the Roman Catholic Diocese’s “General Treasury Transfer) account for $174,495.77 (or 15%) of the money raised by Stand for Marriage Maine.

4. Contributions from Religious Groups with a Declared In-State Source account for $7,615.64 (or 0.6%) of the money raised by Stand for Marriage Maine.

5. Contributions by Maine Businesses and Individuals account for $51,165.00 (or 4%) of the money raised by Stand for Marriage Maine.

6. Contributions by Out-of-State Businesses and Individuals account for $17,565.00 (or 1.5%) of the money raised by Stand for Marriage Maine.

7. Unitemized Contributions with an Unreported Source account for $83,048.63 (or 7%) of the money raised by Stand for Marriage Maine.

The first overwhelming fact about the money being used to prop up Stand for Marriage Maine is that it’s from religious organizations. The second overwhelming fact about Stand for Marriage Maine’s money is that it’s religious money coming from out-of-state sources. All other trends are overwhelmed by these.

You can verify this freely available information for yourself at the Maine Campaign Finance website.

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