HRC Tries to Tie NOM to Donation From Alleged White Supremacist

BY Lucas Grindley

December 06 2012 3:18 PM ET

Michael Peroutka speaks at the 2012 meeting of the League of the South. (Watch video)

The group that opposed marriage equality in Maryland is accused today of taking thousands of dollars from a donor "active in white supremacist, secessionist causes."

The Maryland Marriage Alliance, which is backed by the National Organization for Marriage, was significantly out-fundraised in its failed attempt to block a marriage equality law. And the Human Rights Campaign says records show the Alliance accepted $10,000 from Michael Peroutka, who it notes is a proud member of the League of the South.

The group has been called “explicitly racist” by the Southern Poverty Law Center, which also labeled the League a “hate group.” Peroutka has denied he's a white supremacist, according to The Baltimore Sun, but he has spoken at the League's conferences in 2012, 2010, 2008, and 2004.

HRC called on the Alliance to return the $10,000, and it linked its accusation to a "racially divisive" pattern of behavior from NOM, its main backer.

"NOM is no stranger to exploiting race as a means of advancing its agenda," HRC said in a statement, noting that the antigay group's leaked strategy documents included a plan to "drive a wedge between gays and blacks."

The Maryland marriage equality law is already beginning to take effect, as same-sex couples could obtain marriage licenses today, and weddings can begin on January 1.

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