The effort to ban same-sex marriage in Minnesota’s constitution will undoubtedly be one of the longest ballot campaigns in history, given the vote is not until November, 2012. The coalition of anti-gay groups advocating for the amendment, Minnesota for Marriage, has repeatedly stated that it expects to be outspent by equality groups opposing the measure. But Andy Birkey at the American Independent did a little digging and found that over the past five years, Minnesota for Marriage has spent $3.7 million advocating for the amendment, five times what Outfront Minnesota and Project 515 have spent advocating on behalf of same-sex couples:
For opponents of same-sex marriage to claim that they are the financial underdogs is completely disingenuous. It was because of their incredible spending that the legislature approved the amendment to be placed on the ballot in the first place. And the Minnesota Family Council plans to raise another $5.25 million through Focus on the Family’s “Ignite” fundraising campaign, in addition to whatever the Minnesota Catholic Conference and National Organization for Marriage contribute.
Granted, Minnesota’s LGBT groups are now supported by national organizations like Freedom To Marry and the Human Rights Campaign, so those fighting constitutionally-enshrined discrimination will have some outside support as well. Nevertheless, Minnesota for Marriage is a financial powerhouse and anything but an underdog in this long fight.