Or how about just $5? It'd be kind of a "pay it forward" wedding gift, to well, every gay person you've ever sympathized with when they had their hopes dashed by Prop 8 in California or Question
2 1 in Maine.
This nice-looking, young man is Bill Humphrey, and he's the statewide director for Delaware Right to Marry Political Action Committee. He's got a little problem, really, just a little one. And I know we here at Kos and the Netroots can help him out.
See, Bill's working to get marriage equality onto Delaware's legislative agenda this session. And if it gets off the ground, it's got a good chance of passing. The problem is, it's been a long time since anyone checked in with good people of Delaware about how they feel about the gays. And it seems, the gays are kinda on an upswing, so there's good reason to believe when the news comes back it'll be good. In fact, king of polling, Nate Silver agrees. He says Delaware voters are ready in 2011 to accept marriage equality if it were put to a vote. (Fortunately, they don't have that option.)
But, polls don't conduct themselves. So, Bill needs just $2,250 dollars to pay Public Policy Polling to conduct a poll on Delaware residents' attitudes about marriage equality.
I know, it's gauche to ask for money. I personally believe I was meant for higher pursuits. But the reality is the anti-gay hate industry is rich. Very rich. And they are powerful, and have the ears of some powerful folks. Just one group, National Organization for Marriage (NOM), is estimated in 2009 to have collected $3,000,000, including a single donation of $1,400,000 from Catholic Church affiliated Knights of Columbus. And they sunk millions into a variety of races around the country. In this last cycle they spent half a million dollars to go after those judges in Iowa.
NOM also sunk another half a million dollars going after Governor Lynch in New Hampshire for signing a marriage equality bill. They didn't get their prize. (Yay!) But they're not backing down. They're gearing up to spend at least $100k in Rhode Island.
They have lots of money. Fortunately, we have the arc of a just universe on our side. And, we have facts. But Bill and his group just need the money to mine for those facts. And they could be very helpful and persuasive facts for him to have.
When Bill's request came to me I was struck by its quaintness. $2,250 is not much, it's pretty obtainable. I mean, I'm used to reading these budgets of six digits. So, I figure, if everyone donated just $10 (the price of a movie ticket!), we'd only need 225 nationwide to chip in. (Of course, if you give more, that's great!) And we can help Bill and Right to Marry lay the a solid groundwork for a nice victory in Delaware. Let's go to it.
Now, think carefully. And remember, the Right Wing Extremists in Delaware must be pretty despondent that their hometown Tea Party Queen Christine O'Donnell got Royally trounced in the last election. They lost their big chance to make masturbation illegal. I imagine the left scoring a marriage equality victory in 2011 would be a real kick in the pants, wouldn't it? And wouldn't that just be a crying shame?
Enhanced transcript for the video impaired.
Hi. My name is Bill Humphrey, and I'm the statewide director for Delaware Right to Marry Political Action Committee.
We are leading the effort to pass legislation this year for civil marriage equality in the state of Delaware. Our bill is modeled upon the 2009 New Hampshire marriage equality law and contains clear protections for unhindered freedom of religion. We believe we have a very strong draft law, which we hope to have introduced soon. [Read the proposal outline here.]
Today, I'm here with a pretty simple request. There hasn't been a poll done in the state of Delaware on any LGBT issues for several years. We think that opinions have shifted significantly just in the last few years, and we're ready to put that to the test. However, in order to do that, we still need about two thousand dollars for our poll by Public Policy Polling. We're an all-volunteer organization, and we are absolutely counting on small-dollar donations from the netroots to help pay for the poll.
We also should note that we have to get this poll done in the next several weeks in order to be able to move our effort legislative ahead this year because the legislative session in Delaware is fairly short. Right now we also have a pro-LGBT Democratic governor, a Democratic supermajority in the House, and a Democratic Senate majority. We don't know how long that situation might last, and we don't want to fight this out in an election year either. That makes this period extremely critical.
Donations of any amount - big or small - are deeply appreciated.
If you would prefer to just write a check, there's a link below with information on how to do that. Otherwise, you can just use the ActBlue link below to donate securely and instantly.
Thanks again for your support. It really makes a difference.
Donate on our ActBlue page to help pay for the poll:
Thanks for watching, and reading, if you just can't donate, give us a rec, so someone who can won't miss this. Two prior diaries by Bill:
• Why Does Marriage Equality Matter to You • Help Us Bring Marriage Equality to Delaware
• You can follow the news of this story at Delaware Right To Marry's Facebook page.
JPMassar here: It's really important to demonstrate that a majority of citizens in states like Delaware, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Maryland and New York are supportive of marriage equality so legislators can feel comfortable about voting for equality bills and against repeal efforts. To start the ball rolling I will match $10 in contributions for the first 10 people to donate at least $10, thereby getting us 10% of the way to $2000. Just leave a note in the comments if you'd like to have your contribution matched.
Clarknt67 here: If anyone else has a matching challenge, let me know, and I'll update the diary with it. (Comment and write "Matching Challenge" in the subject line.)
But wait! There's more! Please welcome Bill to Daily Kos. He'll be here to answer questions at 12:30 pm EST, he'll be posting under the handle Cpt Robespierre. Feel free to ask him any questions you have about the legislative outlook for marriage equality in DE or any other topics that come to mind.
PS. I don't usually do "thanks for the rec list," (which is not to say I'm not always grateful!) but thanks for the rec list!!!!
Update! Terrific! We're within $400 of the goal! Thank you so much, everyone!
Thanks for all your support and the donations! It's a mitzvah!
Bill shares this with the community:
"I've been reading Daily Kos regularly since the fall of 2007. In all that time, I have still never gotten over just how generous and supportive this community can be. When a small group of volunteers in Delaware got together right after the election last year, we knew we would probably be taking on the establishment. If there's anything we Kossacks love, it's to take on the establishment, and this netroots community has been very supportive of the campaigns for marriage equality in the past. I had no idea if we could even get off the ground, but I was confident that if we could come up with the money for the poll we would, so we took a gamble. Today you all came through in a big way, and I cannot thank you enough.
I am now looking toward the rather daunting task of preparing dozens and dozens of thank you notes, but I will be smiling the whole time. You've confirmed for me once again that this is a truly great community of activists.
Statewide Director, Delaware Right to Marry"
I myself, Clarknt67, did not sleep a wink last night worrying my efforts would mostly accomplish a big old serving of egg all over my face. Of course, that's all about me, not you dear, generous Kossacks. Thanks so much for making my worry in vain. JP shared this downthread about the makeup of the Delaware State Legisalture.
The House of Representatives is composed of 41 members, each of whom is elected to a two year term. Democrats currently hold 26 of these seats and 15 are held by Republicans. There is no limit to the number of terms that a Representative may serve.
The Senate is composed of 21 members, each of whom is elected to a four-year term, except when reapportionment occurs at which time Senators may be elected to a two-year term. Democrats currently hold 14 of these seats and 7 are held by Republicans.
With a LGBT-supportive Democratic Governor, the water looks warm. Make the case, Right To Marry!