By Julie Bolcer
Originally published on Advocate.com August 19 2011 1:40 AM ET
The Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board has dismissed two complaints that Common Cause Minnesota filed against the National Organization for Marriage and the Minnesota Family Council alleging that advertising the groups ran last year about an amendment against same-sex marriages constituted lobbying.
According to the The Minnesota Independent, the board ruled Wednesday that the vague nature of the ads would not have triggered the lobbyist registration requirement and dismissed the complaint against NOM. The board dismissed the complaint against the Minnesota Family Council because the group did not pay NOM for the ads.
“Because the ads were vague, NOM did not actually lobby for the anti–gay marriage amendment, the board noted,” reports the Independent. “At issue is the fact that although NOM advocated the election of Tom Emmer who supported the amendment, the governor has no say in constitutional amendments.”
Common Cause Minnesota had asked for financial penalties and an audit of NOM’s spending in Minnesota. The Independent reports that the group spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on the TV and radio ads.
The Minnesota legislature this year approved a constitutional amendment that would restrict marriage to the union of a man and a woman. Voters will consider the amendment in 2012.