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Marriage Equality

Maine High Court: NOM Must Disclose Donors

Maine High Court: NOM Must Disclose Donors

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The antigay group should reveal the names of donors to its 2009 campaign against marriage equality in the state, the court ruled.

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The National Organization for Marriage cannot withhold the names of donors to its 2009 effort to repeal a marriage equality law in Maine, the state's highest court ruled Thursday.

The Maine Supreme Judicial Court affirmed a ruling by the Kennebec County Superior Court, rejecting "NOM's arguments that subpoenas issued by the Maine Commission on Governmental Ethics and Elections Practices violate donors' First Amendment rights and expose them to 'threats, harassment and reprisal,'" the Lewiston Sun-Journal reports.

If NOM solicited donations specifically for the Maine campaign, it should have provided donors' names to the commission, the court ruled. But NOM had not even registered as a political action committee, as required by Maine law.

The Maine legislature passed a marriage equality law in 2009, but voters repealed it via ballot initiative. Another initiative campaign led to the restoration of equal marriage rights last year. NOM complied with state campaign finance laws in the latter election.

The ruling is the latest of several against NOM's attempts to shield donors' identities. No word yet on NOM's reaction; read The Advocate's investigation of the group's finances here.

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Trudy Ring

Trudy Ring is The Advocate’s senior politics editor and copy chief. She has been a reporter and editor for daily newspapers and LGBTQ+ weeklies/monthlies, trade magazines, and reference books. She is a political junkie who thinks even the wonkiest details are fascinating, and she always loves to see political candidates who are groundbreaking in some way. She enjoys writing about other topics as well, including religion (she’s interested in what people believe and why), literature, theater, and film. Trudy is a proud “old movie weirdo” and loves the Hollywood films of the 1930s and ’40s above all others. Other interests include classic rock music (Bruce Springsteen rules!) and history. Oh, and she was a Jeopardy! contestant back in 1998 and won two games. Not up there with Amy Schneider, but Trudy still takes pride in this achievement.
Trudy Ring is The Advocate’s senior politics editor and copy chief. She has been a reporter and editor for daily newspapers and LGBTQ+ weeklies/monthlies, trade magazines, and reference books. She is a political junkie who thinks even the wonkiest details are fascinating, and she always loves to see political candidates who are groundbreaking in some way. She enjoys writing about other topics as well, including religion (she’s interested in what people believe and why), literature, theater, and film. Trudy is a proud “old movie weirdo” and loves the Hollywood films of the 1930s and ’40s above all others. Other interests include classic rock music (Bruce Springsteen rules!) and history. Oh, and she was a Jeopardy! contestant back in 1998 and won two games. Not up there with Amy Schneider, but Trudy still takes pride in this achievement.