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Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Facts about Proposition 8 and LDS supporters

  1. Mormons make up less than 2% of the population of California . There are approximately 800,000 LDS out of a total population of approximately 34 million.

  1. Mormon voters were less than 5% of the yes vote. If one estimates that 250,000 LDS are registered voters (the rest being children), then LDS voters made up 4.6% of the Yes vote and 2.4% of the total Proposition 8 vote.

  1. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) donated no money to the Yes on 8 campaign. Individual members of the Church were encouraged to support the Yes on 8 efforts and, exercising their constitutional right to free speech, donated whatever they felt like donating.

  1. The No on 8 campaign raised more money than the Yes on 8 campaign. Unofficial estimates put No on 8 at $38 million and Yes on 8 at $32 million, making it the most expensive non-presidential election in the country.

  1. Advertising messages for the Yes on 8 campaign are based on case law and real-life situations. The No on 8 supporters have insisted that the Yes on 8 messaging is based on lies. Every Yes on 8 claim is supported.

  1. The majority of our friends and neighbors voted Yes on 8. Los Angeles County voted in favor of Yes on 8. Ventura County voted in favor of Yes on 8.

  1. African Americans overwhelmingly supported Yes on 8. Exit polls show that 70% of Black voters chose Yes on 8. This was interesting because the majority of these voters voted for President-elect Obama. No on 8 supporters had assumed that Obama voters would vote No on 8.

  1. The majority of Latino voters voted Yes on 8. Exit polls show that the majority of Latinos supported Yes on 8 and cited religious beliefs (assumed to be primarily Catholic).

  1. The Yes on 8 coalition was a broad spectrum of religious organizations. Catholics, Evangelicals, Protestants, Orthodox Jews, Muslims – all supported Yes on 8. It is estimated that there are 10 million Catholics and 10 million Protestants in California . Mormons were a tiny fraction of the population represented by Yes on 8 coalition members.

  1. Not all Mormons voted in favor of Proposition 8. Our faith accords that each person be allowed to choose for him or her self. Church leaders have asked members to treat other members with "civility, respect and love," despite their differing views.

  1. The Church did not violate the principal of separation of church and state. This principle is derived from the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, which reads, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof . . ." The phrase "separation of church and state", which does not appear in the Constitution itself, is generally traced to an 1802 letter by Thomas Jefferson, although it has since been quoted in several opinions handed down by the United States Supreme Court in recent years. The LDS Church is under no obligation to refrain from participating in the political process, to the extent permitted by law. U.S. election law is very clear that Churches may not endorse candidates, but may support issues. The Church as always been very careful on this matter and occasionally (not often) chooses to support causes that it feels to be of a moral nature.

  1. Supporters of Proposition 8 did exactly what the Constitution provides for all citizens: they exercised their First Amendment rights to speak out on an issue that concerned them, make contributions to a cause that they support, and then vote in the regular electoral process. For the most part, this seems to have been done in an open, fair, and civil way. Opponents of 8 have accused supporters of being bigots, liars, and worse. The fact is, we simply did what Americans do – we spoke up, we campaigned, and we voted.

It is sick that people are now protesting at places of worship for this church. It shows the lack of respect and tolerance they have towards people different from them. It also shows the level of their character. These people are despicable. They talk about being Christian and loving your neighbor and that's why we should have voted no on 8, but they sure don't practice what they preach. It's funny that they are holding up signs in protest that say stop the hate, when they themselves are in the process of practicing that same hate on a church. What hypocrites. If they do believe in Christianity then it is safe to say they will be held accountable for these actions one day. Good luck with that!

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Eric said...

Thank you very much for clearing this up. I knew that the church would never invest money to this proposition and the fact that Mormons are being persecuted and that they make up such an SMALL percentage of the Total votes is ridiculous.

Where did you get your information from about the numbers and the fact that the church did not donate money?

RandomEncounters said...

This information came from Kevin Hamilton. He is on the Southern California Public Affairs Counsel for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Thanks for your interest and support.

w said...

The point that is missed that--without the substantial Mormon contributions to the "Yes On Proposition 8" campaign (estimated as high as $22,000,000 or about 77 percent of contributions to Yes On 8)--Proposition 8 would most likely have NOT passed. The proposition was way behind in the polls until the Mormon money from around the country flooded into California.

I also note that the Mormon Church itself provided substantial "in-kind" contributions to the Yes On 8campaign--the vast majority of which have not been reported yet. A formal complaint was filed with the Fair Political Practices Commission in California (the state's election watchdog) abou the Mormon Church's failure to properly report its in-kind financial contributions to the Yes On 8 campaign.

Finally, the extent that Mormons are complaining about the bad presss, consider this: When the Mormon church chose to enter the political sphere, the fact that they are a religious institution became irrelevant. They led non-Mormons in their political campaign, and they exhorted everyone – regardless of their religious affiliation — to vote "yes" on Prop. 8, which affected Mormons and non-Mormons alike.

Mormon leaders were acting in their role as citizens in the democratic process. But as citizens leading a political campaign, they cannot escape public accountability for their public actions. After all that, the leadership of the LDS cannot suddenly change roles, toss up their hands and say, "You can't criticize us! We're a religion!" They forfeited that right when they threw themselves enthusiastically into a non-religious, political campaign.

This is not bigotry or discrimination against a religion. They are politicians now, and they deserve the same scrutiny and criticism due to any other political leader or movement.

Anonymous said...

Woah....Random encounters of homophobic dribble...

I feel sorry for you.

Jesus loves everyone (gays too), so should you...