The Supreme Court has decided not to hear the National Organization for Marriage’s challenge to Maine’s campaign finance laws:
The Supreme Court on Monday refused to hear a constitutional challenge to a Maine law that requires those seeking to raise and spend money in state election campaigns to organize as a political action committee for that activity, and make significant disclosures about their financial operations. That was challenged in a petition, National Organization for Marriage v. McKee (11-599), after the state law was upheld by the First Circuit Court.
Though this may be perceived as a non-event, it represents a huge defeat for the anti-gay organization’s secrecy and as well as its self-victimizing claims that supporters of “traditional marriage” are persecuted for their beliefs. NOM was one of the top fundraisers supporting Maine’s Question 1 in 2009, a people’s veto of marriage equality legislation that ended up passing. For three years, NOM has used this lawsuit to keep the sources of its funding hidden, but now the organization has no other avenues to appeal, having lost every step of the way.
Though their identities remain unknown, NOM has a select group of donors that fund most of its operations. In the meantime, it purports to have a broad base of “members,” even though it doesn’t collect any money from membership dues. It is particularly fortuitous that NOM faces this loss in addition to its similar setback in Washington state, as both states are planning for referenda to approve marriage equality this year. Unfortunately for Brian Brown, John Eastman, Maggie Gallagher, and the rest of the NOM crew, free speech does not come without the cost of accountability, and the world might soon see just how NOM has paid for its.