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HRC, Courage Campaign launch New website reveals NOM’s shady activities

NOM Exposed NOM Tour Tracker NOM Tour Tracker-California Right-wing

By Adam Bink

This morning, the Human Rights Campaign and Courage Campaign are launching a new website — — that breaks open the cover on NOM’s shady activities and lets the sun shine in where NOM doesn’t want to see it. It’s an important way to expose the worst of NOM to the public.

  • Connects the dots on NOM’s funding streams and budget, from Opus Dei and the Catholic Church to the Mormon Church and Evangelical Christians
  • Is a clearinghouse on all of NOM’s ongoing ethics and campaign finance law violation issues
  • Catalogues NOM’s public faces and their deep ties to religious institutions, from the Wirthlin family that appeared in Yes on 8 and Yes on 1 advertisements claiming their children were taught “gay” marriage in public schools to the infamous “Gathering Storm” ad star and Opus Dei leader Damon Owens as well as Ruth Institute founder Jennifer Roback Morse.
  • Is a one-stop shopping hub for NOM’s TV and radio ads, along with direct mail and fliers and other propaganda

Newsweek just published a piece this morning about NOM Exposed on their website you can find here. Two quotes I want to pull out, the first from Courage founder Rick Jacobs:

“They [NOM] will take a page from their victim playbook and say they are under threat from us while they are accepting millions of dollars to take people’s rights away.”

And HRC spokesperson Michael Cole:

“We want to out NOM for what it is — a secretive player in antigay politics, which is posing as an offshore company for antigay religious money”

Both frames are exactly right. The other thing is that, as it says in the piece, religious money doesn’t always go where it should. Folks who donate to groups like the Knights of Columbus may not be aware that the money they give isn’t necessarily going to low-income families — it may be going to NOM. In Maine, even as the Catholic Diocese closed parishes for want of funds, it spent an inordinate amount of time and money lobbying in favor of Question 1. In DC, the Catholic Church waged its own war against legislation to enshrine the freedom to marry for same-sex couples into law, even threatening to shut down its social services arm for tens of thousands of residents, leaving low-income people, including children without homes, out on the street. This website helps shed a light on where religious money is going. is a useful resource for those of us working to expose NOM for who they are, and to educate the rest of the public that doesn’t know about NOM or thinks they’re just regular Joes and Jills without the right-wing — in some cases, radically fringe — religious views.

Visit And help spread the word by sharing with your networks over e-mail, social media, and word of mouth.

HRC and Courage’s joint press release is below.

HRC & Courage Campaign Reveal the Real National Organization for Marriage

NOM Exposed” Website Launched as Fall Elections Loom

WASHINGTON – As the National Organization for Marriage, or NOM, embarks on a fall election campaign to defeat candidates who support full marriage equality, the Human Rights Campaign, in collaboration with the Courage Campaign, unveiled “NOM Exposed,” a live, interactive website which reveals NOM’s deep anti-gay affiliations, its long connections to the Mormon and Catholic churches and its quest to keep voters in the dark about its financing.  The site is at

At the same time, HRC announced the formation of the NOM Project to follow the ongoing political work and propaganda of NOM as it attempts to influence elections and legislative campaigns across the country.  The project will be led by Kevin Nix, a longtime LGBT advocate and political and media consultant.  A former communications director at both Servicemembers Legal Defense Network and the Family Equality Council, Nix also worked at Media Matters in the 2004 presidential cycle.

“NOM and its leaders project a message of tolerance yet NOM Exposed shows that behind the well-trained talking points is an anti-gay animus and moneyed connections that it is loath to reveal,” said HRC president Joe Solmonese.  “This website is not static.  Working with the Courage Campaign, we will be watching the campaign trail and documenting NOM’s political buys and bedfellows. We will connect the dots for voters.”

NOM Exposed builds off the success of Courage Campaign’s NOM Tour Tracker – a blog of first-hand accounts, photos and videos chronicling NOM’s “2010 Summer for Marriage—One Man, One Woman” bus tour of 17 states.  The Courage Campaign deployed three staffers to follow NOM’s tour and file reports from the road, generating more than one-million page views and more than 15,000 comments.  During the course of the tour, federal courts declared two of NOM’s top policy priorities – California’s Proposition 8 and the Federal Defense of Marriage Act – unconstitutional.

The NOM Tour Tracker showed NOM’s summer tour consistently outnumbered three-to-one by pro-equality counter rally participants organized by Freedom to Marry and state LGBT organizations.  It also showed NOM staff attempting to limit public access to their events, and NOM’s sparse supporters doing everything from speaking in tongues, to comparing marriage equality to genocide and advocating the murder of LGBT families.

“The NOM Tour Tracker unmasked the so-called ‘National Organization for Marriage’ as a small and secretive fringe group devoted to attacking families, spreading lies, and sowing fear,” said Courage Campaign Founder and Chairman Rick Jacobs.  “With a majority of Americans and a growing number of conservatives now standing up for equality, NOM Exposed takes this important work a step further by bringing to light the nefarious connections, shadowy finances, and dubious ethics at the heart of NOM’s brand of political extremism.  We are proud to work with the Human Rights Campaign on this important initiative.”

NOM Exposed, the result of several months of research and collaboration, reveals the following:

  • At a time of the country’s greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression, NOM’s financial growth has been explosive.  NOM has amassed huge resources – estimated to reach or exceed $10M in 2010 – from modest beginnings in 2007.
  • NOM is a highly secretive organization that tries to not only hide the identity of its political donors from the voting public in state after state, but operates in a way to discourage people from knowing who its key players and associates are.
  • NOM has deep connections to the Catholic Church hierarchy, to the Mormon Church, to evangelical right-wing pastors and churches and to those who have a long history of anti-gay rhetoric and activity.  These are individuals and organizations which not only oppose same-sex marriage, but oppose domestic partnerships, civil unions, hate crimes protections and even fertility treatments for women because some of those women could be lesbians.
  • Since 2008, NOM and its allies have engaged in a radical, nationwide plan to flout long-established campaign finance disclosure laws.  This is nothing short of a strategic, coordinated plan to hide NOM’s political activities from voters.  This effort has prompted several state investigations and resounding legal defeats for NOM.

In addition to the rich archive of information, NOM Exposed features a blog where the latest on NOM’s activities will be tracked.  LGBT leaders will also contribute guest posts to the blog with their own research and experiences with NOM.  Freedom to Marry which organized the Summer For Marriage tour in response to NOM has the inaugural guest post up today.

“NOM Exposed gives voters a comprehensive look at an organization that operates largely in secret, yet plays a super-sized role in campaigns from California to Maine,” added Solmonese. “By releasing this site and dedicating resources to NOM Project, we will confront this web of secrets and lies wherever NOM seeks to spread its political propaganda.”

Please share what you are seeing and learning about NOM — as well as your reaction to the web site — in the comments. It’s important that we expose NOM for the secretive, nefarious fringe group they are, instead of the “rational and reasonable” image they try to present to the public.

Update: We’re getting a lot of reports of problems accessing the site, which may be a possible denial-of-service attack. We’re looking into it and will let you know when we know more.


  • 1. Chris in Lathrop  |  September 28, 2010 at 4:32 am is currently experiencing too much traffic for me to view, but I can't wait to share it!

  • 2. Alan E.  |  September 28, 2010 at 4:51 am

    Because so many people have linked to it all at once from so many blogs!

  • 3. Chris in Lathrop  |  September 28, 2010 at 4:52 am

    Yup… just gotta wait my turn.

  • 4. Kate  |  September 28, 2010 at 4:55 am

    Now I know why all those links were showing up in the recently posted panel….. I was beginning to think we'd be infiltrated.

  • 5. Kate  |  September 28, 2010 at 4:57 am

    @to myself

    "been" infiltrated…..

  • 6. Lesbians Love Boies  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:03 am


  • 7. Lesbians Love Boies  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:03 am

    um and once again, I shall try subscribing

  • 8. JonT  |  September 28, 2010 at 8:53 am

    Subscribing. And an excellent new site 🙂 Your one stop hater shop.

    And Orson Scott Card. How disappointing.

  • 9. Chris in Lathrop  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:47 am

    Ok, finally broke down and got a FB just to start exposing lies!

  • 10. Kate  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:50 am

    That's the only reason I got one, too Chris — for P8tt stuff.

  • 11. Chris in Lathrop  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:28 am

    Abonniernde. Gleichheit für alle! 🙂

  • 12. Kathleen  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:53 am

    Just subscribing. Chris, welcome to FB! I don't entirely trust it, but it's a good way to connect to people.

  • 13. Chris in Lathrop  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:35 am

    Thanks for the welcomes, Kate & Kathleen. 🙂

    Yeah, I've long mistrusted FB on security and privacy, but I've had enough of those fears allayed now. And I figured this way I can share P8TT & other important news with those closest to me a little more easily.

  • 14. Rhie  |  September 28, 2010 at 12:25 pm

    Hey! Welcome to the Dark Side lol 🙂

    If you want to do the friending thing my link to my FB is above. If you don't, that's perfectly fine too 🙂

  • 15. James Sweet  |  September 28, 2010 at 4:45 am


    Don't forget that, in addition to misleading people about where the funds are being directed, religious institutions get automatic tax exemption. Other non-profits have to open their books, show where their money is going, and prove that they are, you know, actual charities. Not so for religious organizations.

  • 16. James Sweet  |  September 28, 2010 at 4:55 am

    Moreover, I know there are occasional Mormons who show up here in support of same-sex marriage. Good for you, but I have to ask… are you a Mormon in good standing? Because if you are, you've been paying 10% of your income in tithing. And um… hate to break it to you, but that means you've been donating thousands of dollars to anti-same-sex marriage campaigns.

    Just sayin'…

    Any Mormon who supports same-sex marriage should stop paying tithing today. And when you tell your Bishop why, his reaction might give you second thoughts about being a Mormon. Again, just sayin'…

  • 17. Gregory in Salt Lake  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:34 am

    Its a very personal issue and not so easy to blanket-fix. I vote Democrat…but I certainly do not agree with everything they represent.

    I DO NOT pay tithing to Mormon Church for MANY reasons. However, my dear sweet mother is faithful about it. I struggle with encouraging my whole family to ask to be ex-communicated from Mormon Church or take some other approach……

  • 18. Rhie  |  September 28, 2010 at 12:29 pm

    I agree with you that it is personal and more complicated that it would seem to a person on the outside for both Catholics and Mormons.

    It's easy for me, an ex-Protestant, to say "oh just stop paying".

    I think the best we can do is tell people what James said above. Explain where the money is going and let them decide what to do about that. In my church, a person could earmark money for certain funds.

    I know that's rare, but maybe people could donate services like roof repair at cost or give food etc directly to the charity the church supports rather than donating the 10%.

  • 19. elliom  |  September 28, 2010 at 4:16 pm

    I also agree, this is a very personal choice. I'm still a member of my childhood church (Lutheran – ELCA) for community reasons, though I rejected organized religion a long tme ago, and consider myself an intellectual Buddhist, not a xtian.

  • 20. elliom  |  September 28, 2010 at 4:18 pm

    And, yes, I realize that makes me a hypocite on some level, but it's what I feel I need to do.

  • 21. Alan E.  |  September 28, 2010 at 4:50 am

    Hmm I didn't get an email about this new post. I was about to post a link in the comments section on this very site.

  • 22. Alan E.  |  September 28, 2010 at 4:50 am

    Oh there's the email!

  • 23. Ann S.  |  September 28, 2010 at 4:51 am


  • 24. Jonathan H  |  September 28, 2010 at 4:57 am

    I think P8TT is getting a little overwhelmed, email notes are showing up late and sometimes not at all.

    I'm subbing under Ann 'cause I like her style

  • 25. Ann S.  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:03 am

    Right back atcha, Jonathan!

  • 26. AndrewPDX  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:16 am

    scribing, a bit late to the party.

    Liberty, Equality, Fraternity

  • 27. Alan E.  |  September 28, 2010 at 4:53 am

    Is a one-stop shopping hub for NOM’s TV and radio ads, along with direct mail and fliers and other propaganda

    Without having to go directly to their site!

  • 28. Chris in Lathrop  |  September 28, 2010 at 4:59 am

    Totally OT- working on my Gravatar finally, and not too tech-savvy. Could someone tell me, will I have to change my username here if I don't use "Chris in Lathrop" there? Thanks! 🙂

  • 29. Carpool Cookie  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:51 am

    This is a totally non-tech observation, but I think when I signed up for gravatar and then posted here, I was able to type in whatever name I wanted in the comment posting box once it came up, here. So you might be able to manipulate that option a bit.

  • 30. Kate  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:53 am

    Cookie — where's your amicus brief report? Did the dog eat it?

  • 31. Carpool Cookie  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:57 am

    Ugghh….I am still highlighting….thank you for asking.

  • 32. Chris in Lathrop  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:00 am

    Thanks Cookie! 🙂

  • 33. Chris in Lathrop  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:06 am

    Hey, it worked!!! 🙂

  • 34. Lesbians Love Boies  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:07 am

    Love it!

  • 35. AndrewPDX  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:19 am

    Yes, you can change your display name — my gravatar login name isn't 'AndrewPDX' cuz someone already had that name (grr).

    Liberty, Equality, Fraternity

  • 36. Chris in Lathrop  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:39 am

    Thanks, Andrew!

  • 37. RebeccaRGB  |  September 28, 2010 at 12:45 pm

    Gravatar uses your email address to link your posts to your avatar. As long as that's the same nothing else matters.

  • 38. Ronnie  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:05 am

    “NOM Exposed gives voters a comprehensive look at an organization that operates largely in secret,"

    ssssssssshhhhhhhhhhhh….that's supposed to be a secret

    HI LOUIS!!!!!!!!…… ; ) ….Ronnie

  • 39. Kate  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:29 am

    Y Hola, Thomas/Tomas! (Sorry, I don't have accent marks or special characters on this keyboard. Not that they'd notice, given their lousy Spanish…… 🙂 )

  • 40. Kate  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:30 am

    Y Hola, Thomas/Tomas! (Sorry, I don't have accents or special characters on this keyboard. Not that they'd notice, given their lousy Spanish.)

  • 41. Kate  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:31 am

    Whoops. And my lousy duplication.

  • 42. Alan E.  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:41 am

    Hi Thomas!

  • 43. RebeccaRGB  |  September 28, 2010 at 12:50 pm

    ¡Hola, Tomás!

    If you had a Mac, you wouldn't have this problem. 😉
    ¡ = Option-1
    é = Option-E, E
    á = Option-E, A
    ñ = Option-N, N
    Ñ = Option-N, Shift-N

  • 44. fiona64  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:19 am

    Hola, Louis y Tomas!

    Como esta ustedes?

    Fiona (who has pretty much exhausted what little she remembers of middle school Spanish with those sentences, and can't remember how to make the little punctuation marks using a keyboard)

  • 45. Kate  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:23 am

    estan ustedes …… :}

  • 46. Kate  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:24 am

    Hey Fiona! Maybe you can get a job translating for their next Hispanic tour!!! Love 'ya, Kate

  • 47. Sagesse  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:26 am

    Scriging for now. So looking forward to reading this later.

  • 48. StraightForEquality  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:33 am

    Same here.

  • 49. adambink  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:31 am

    Hey folks, see an update above. The problem isn't a capacity issue but something else going on, possibly a DOS attack. Will keep you posted.

  • 50. ElsieH  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:43 am

    I can not express the relief that I feel with this (NOM Exposed) coming online. We have a great community here but sometimes I feel like we are stuck in our own echo chamber. I've been supporting the Courage Campaign and now I may start donating to HRC again.

  • 51. Gregory in Salt Lake  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:54 am

    DITTO! Good comments ElsieH….I too have shied away from HRC

  • 52. bJason  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:46 am

    I wouldn't be in such a hurry to start donating to HRC just yet. KUDOS on the site, and all, but after decades and tens of millions of dollars we should have more from them than just an organization president on the DC best dressed list.

    Keep donating to CC and maybe some other legal orgs that are actually WORKING towards winning our equality in the courts (the only place we are going to get it).

    Just sayin'

  • 53. Gregory in SLC  |  September 28, 2010 at 9:29 am

    good points bJason.

  • 54. Gregory in Salt Lake  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:44 am

    Thank you all you creative, ethical,. wonderful people (what other adjectives can I possibly use to describe my admiration and appreciation!) who challenge the lies…

    "It also showed NOM staff attempting to limit public access to their events, and NOM’s sparse supporters doing everything from speaking in tongues, to comparing marriage equality to genocide and advocating the murder of LGBT families"

    … and create websites like P8TT and NOM EXPOSED. I PRAISE and BLESS all of you!

    Love, Gregory

  • 55. William Lindsey  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:54 am

    Might be good to keep investigating the possibility of a denial of service attack. Even when I can access the new website, many of its links are dead. And when I try to access the HRC Backstory blog, I have similar problems reaching it.

    This could be due to heavy traffic, but I also think something else may be going on with these sites.

  • 56. Lesbians Love Boies  |  September 28, 2010 at 5:56 am

    It could just be a router down – which is what I suspect after reviewing a tracert.

  • 57. B&E  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:41 am

    Hold on for the geek speek. I don't think it is a router issue. According to the information below the host is up and answering requests. Could there be a bad DNS entry somewhere.

    foreign host.
    [[email protected] ~]# dig

    ; <> DiG 9.3.6-P1-RedHat-9.3.6-4.P1.el5_4.2 <>
    ;; global options: printcmd
    ;; Got answer:
    ;; ->>HEADER<<- opcode: QUERY, status: NOERROR, id: 42811
    ;; flags: qr rd ra; QUERY: 1, ANSWER: 1, AUTHORITY: 0, ADDITIONAL: 0

    ; IN A

    ;; ANSWER SECTION: 85936 IN A

    ;; Query time: 4 msec
    ;; SERVER: x.x.x.x #53(x.x.x.x)
    ;; WHEN: Tue Sep 28 15:33:57 2010
    ;; MSG SIZE rcvd: 48

    [[email protected] ~]# whois
    [Redirected to]
    %rwhois V-1.5:003eff:00 (by Network Solutions, Inc. V-
    network:IP-Network-Block: –
    network:Organization-Name:Human Rights Campaign
    network:Tech-Contact;I:[email protected]
    network:Admin-Contact;I:[email protected]


    [[email protected] ~]# mtr 0.0% 30.9 37.7 29.8 49.2 6.6 0.0% 48.0 36.7 30.3 82.6 11.5 0.0% 30.5 35.2 30.5 78.4 11.6 0.0% 30.5 33.3 30.3 46.0 4.4
    . 0.0% 31.5 32.2 31.2 36.7 1.5 0.0% 34.5 33.0 30.4 45.3 3.4
    . 0.0% 35.0 32.4 30.3 37.8 2.1
    [[email protected] ~]# telnet 80
    Connected to (
    Escape character is '^]'.

  • 58. Alan E  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:58 am

    Who else is turned on by this nerdgasm?!

  • 59. Kathleen  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:06 am

    Me. And I don't even understand it, but it gets me hot.

  • 60. JusB23  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:18 am

    I <3 nerds!

  • 61. bJason  |  September 28, 2010 at 8:28 am

    @ Alan – I am (nor do I understand it)

  • 62. JonT  |  September 28, 2010 at 9:01 am

    I love it. Do/did it for a living. Makes me hot 🙂

    For a moment there, I thought you had successfully telnetted into the host, then I saw the '80' after it and went 'whew'.

    Hopefully no-one ever logs into their servers with telnet anymore 🙂

    FWIW, I'm not having any problems accessing it, though it is a little slow.

    And who picked out that picture of maggie? Looks like it was taken with a cellphone after a 3-day coke binge. 🙂

  • 63. elliom  |  September 28, 2010 at 4:23 pm

    I believe the term is "moist." :>

  • 64. rf  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:19 am

    While we're all waiting to hear what's going on with nomexposed, Pew Research just published its US Religions Knowledge Survey. they basically found that the US is highly "religious" but also highly ignorant of religions' basic tenents. hmmm. Mormons and Jews do prettty well, but Catholics have a lot of work to do. Atheists and Agnostics showed them all up!

  • 65. rf  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:23 am


  • 66. Chris in Lathrop  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:34 am

    Putting a feather in my Witchy hat for knowing most of those. <|:)

  • 67. Ann S.  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:43 am

    This raised-UU agnostic took that earlier today and got a perfect score. It's not as though I've made a point of studying religion, either. I think it's a matter of being curious about the world around you and other cultures and points of view.

  • 68. Rhie  |  September 28, 2010 at 2:19 pm

    Yes, exactly. At least half those questions are answered at least weekly by the news. Another few are answered by pop culture. Any good history class of the times in which these events occurred will cover The First Great Awakening and the Protestant Reformation because they are important events.

    I wonder how many people got the legal questions wrong.

  • 69. Kathleen  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:16 am

    100% from this atheist, though I admit my answer to #15 was a lucky guess. Most of these I was able to answer, not so much from a study of religion, but knowing a bit about history, cultures, law, and having direct contact with people who practice these religions.

  • 70. Judy  |  September 28, 2010 at 8:30 am

    15 out of 15. I'm a good representative atheist. Born and bred Protestant, studied and attended most Christian denominations, began studying even harder in later life, then found freethinking. I've been much more fulfilled since.

  • 71. BradK  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:26 am

    LOL! Opus Dei. Quick, somebody call Prof. Langdon.

    If Opus Dei is "Work of God", can we call ourselves Opus Gay — "Work of Teh Gheys"?

  • 72. thecatfromtp  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:29 am

    I was able to access the site through a Google search when I couldn't get the link from HRC to work.

  • 73. bb  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:43 am

    Hey folks, I just got a responce from Jelly Belly:

    Thank you for visiting our site. We hope the following information answers your question.


    Thank you for taking the time to write; we appreciate hearing your thoughts and concerns.

    We were unaware of the “National Organization for Marriage” coming to visit prior to several emails that we received. We do not accept reservations for our free tours and tour buses often stop here for our free public tours. We have not rented any of our facilities for this group and no event or rally will be held here.

    Thank you for being among our special Jelly Belly fans. We value your patronage and hope that you will visit us again!


    Kit McCoy
    Consumer Affairs Manager

    Seems that NOM hasn't told any business owner that they're stopping by, as shown with On the Border and now Jelly Belly.

    Just thought I'd share what I've received.

  • 74. bJason  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:50 am

    That rocks, BB! Thanks for sharing.

  • 75. bb  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:19 am

    Seems that other have sent in emails and the response from Jelly Belly is the same.

    I wonder what Jelly Belly will do when NOM shows up there tomorrow.

  • 76. Lesbians Love Boies  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:27 am

    Will NOM even show up?

  • 77. Lesbians Love Boies  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:54 am

    I just got an email from Sen. McCain's office about DADT:

    Thank you for contacting me regarding the military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy. I appreciate hearing your views on this controversial issue.

    Recently, the Senate Armed Services Committee received testimony from Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and the Service Secretaries on the military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy, echoing the desire of President Obama to have it repealed by Congress. The committee also heard the personal views of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullen, several of the combatant commanders, and most recently, the Service Chiefs, who have responsibility for the organization, training, and overall readiness of their forces and for providing their best military advice to the President on matters that might affect their ability to ensure sufficiently trained and ready forces.

    Each of the military's Service Chiefs has expressed his support for the comprehensive, ten-month policy review of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" that Secretary Gates has directed. However, each has indicated that he is not prepared to support a repeal of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy at this time. Based on their expert testimony, I am urging Congress to await the completion of the Pentagon's policy review in order to give the Service Chiefs the information they have asked for before any attempt is made to change law. I will strongly oppose any attempt to change the current law based on an incomplete and inadequate review of this policy, and I hope that my fellow Senators will also take this approach in the interest of national security.

    With respect to the review itself, I have expressed my concerns about its focus and scope. Unfortunately, in his testimony earlier this year to the Senate Armed Services Committee, Secretary Gates described the mandate as "a review of the issues associated with properly implementing a repeal of the 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' policy." The guiding question, as Secretary Gates put it, should be "not whether the military prepares to make this change, but how we best prepare for it." This is consistent with President Obama's goals, but it seems to get things backwards: The current Pentagon review should be an objective study of the relevant military issues, not an implementation plan.

    The issue that Congress must decide, and the issue the Service Chiefs should be asked to give their best military advice about, is whether the "Don't Ask Don't' Tell" policy should be repealed. We should ask that question to our service personnel and their families at all levels and genuinely consider their views in our debate. Clearly, there are many policy and logistical challenges that would have to be overcome if the law is repealed, but that should not be the primary focus of the ongoing policy review. I will continue to insist that we use the coming months to study not only how to implement a change to the current policy, but also whether and why the men and women of the Armed Forces – the generals, the officers, the NCOs, and the privates – support or oppose such a change. I would then expect the views of the Service Chiefs to incorporate this critically important information.

    I am proud of, and thankful for, every American who chooses to put on the uniform of our nation and serve their country, particularly in this time of war. The "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy is not perfect, but it reflects a compromise achieved with great difficulty that has effectively supported military readiness. However imperfect, the policy has allowed many gay and lesbian Americans to serve their country. I honor their service, I honor their sacrifices, and I honor them. But we should not change the current policy until we are confident – from a military standpoint, with the informed advice of the Service Chiefs – that such a change is consistent with military effectiveness.

    Again, thank you again for writing me on this issue. Feel free to contact me in the future on this or any other matter.


    John McCain
    United States Senator

  • 78. bb  |  September 28, 2010 at 6:55 am

    That just makes me want to hurl………

    *covering mouth and running toward the bathroom*

  • 79. Lesbians Love Boies  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:11 am

    He makes me sick too. 5 more weeks, and I hope he is history in the Senate!

  • 80. Carpool Cookie  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:02 am

    [i]"McCAIN: However, each [Service Chief] has indicated that he is not prepared to support a repeal of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy at this time. "[/i]

    So in essence, it's kind of "a Guy Thing"?

  • 81. Chris in Lathrop  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:11 am

    "…but it reflects a compromise achieved with great difficulty that has effectively supported military readiness."

    If it's ok for LGBT personnel to serve, dammit, it should be fine for them to serve openly.


  • 82. Sagesse  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:17 am

    Projectile vomiting.

    The DADT repeal wording in the bill speaks to implementation. The terms of reference of the Working Group refer to implementation, not whether DADT should be repealed.

    He can't undo the study and make it answer questions that weren't asked.

    That neanderthal can't retire too soon.

  • 83. Bob  |  September 28, 2010 at 2:13 pm

    Sagesse, you're right, in this e-mail , McCain, position as he states it, is that the review should be geared towards weathe or not DADT should be repealed.

    Which is way off base from the purpose we were understanding, that the review was to decide, how it would be repealed.

    He's a whack job, but there you have it in black and white, he's not just holding things up, his goal is to kill any attempt at DADT repeal.

  • 84. bJason  |  September 28, 2010 at 8:33 am

    I just threw up in my mouth – and not "a little bit"!

  • 85. JonT  |  September 28, 2010 at 9:05 am

    Blow it out your ass John Mccain.

  • 86. Ray in MA  |  September 28, 2010 at 9:18 am

    McPain in the Butt:

    "We should ask that question to our service personnel and their families at all levels and genuinely consider their views in our debate. "

    NO. Too much like voting for civl rights.

    McPain in the Butt is just trying to sense the pulse of those who could vote for him.

    McPain in the Butt:

    "Feel free to contact me in the future on this or any other matter."

    … why? it's like talking to a wall.

    "It's the Poilcy!!!" "It's the Poilcy!!!" "It's the Poilcy!!!"

  • 87. Bob  |  September 28, 2010 at 9:35 am

    well done LLB's good to get McCain to respond, even though it does make us sick, it's good to get him on the hook

    wonder if this letter could be sent to the people serving in the military,

    wonder how many straight alllies we get after hearing about that new book C Street, and how the military is the last safe place for christians. Most of the Service Chiefs are members and Catholic, how do military members feel fighting for the Catholic Church.

    ending DADT, would be a good step forward in realigning the military to answer to the people through the president, and get the Pope out of that scenario.

  • 88. Anne  |  September 28, 2010 at 7:53 am

    while I'm thrilled with the data being exposed on the NOM exposed site, I have to say the red/black graphics and the lettering is very hard for me to read. Could just be me…


  • 89. Ray in MA  |  September 28, 2010 at 9:20 am

    Yes, but when you look at this site, ask yourself what other colors would be appropriate? Sh!t Brown woud be good, but it would be a trun off for all of us.

  • 90. Kate  |  September 28, 2010 at 9:26 am

    I finally got on and also found it too hard to read in this color scheme. And I'm someone who WANTS to read it! The colors may indeed be appropriate…… but it needs to be readable. Maybe there should be two of these sites — this headache-inducing one for Maggie and the gang and a second and hidden one for us, that is easier to read. 🙂

  • 91. John B.  |  September 28, 2010 at 9:19 am

    Let me see if I've got this straight (so to speak): NOM's top two leaders who keep lecturing us about "traditional marriage" are Brian Brown, who as far as I can tell isn't married and never has been, and Maggie Gallagher, who doesn't use her legal married name and has one child fathered by another man who she was never married to. And they're supposed to be telling US about marriage? BTW that's a fabulously creepy mug shot of Maggie but they really should describe her as "Margaret Gallagher Srivastav, a.k.a. Maggie Gallagher". Where is Mr. Srivastav and why doesn't she use his name? Doesn't she believe in "traditional marriage"???

  • 92. Ray in MA  |  September 28, 2010 at 9:22 am

    Maybe there's a US visa involved for him to stay in the country?

  • 93. Kate  |  September 28, 2010 at 9:28 am

    And they are also saying that we are polygamists. How does one get to be a polygamist without being allowed to marry the first spouse?

  • 94. Kathleen  |  September 28, 2010 at 9:42 am

    Brian's married.

  • 95. John B.  |  September 28, 2010 at 11:06 am

    Well, that still leaves Mrs. Srivastav's rather untraditional circumstances.

  • 96. rf  |  September 28, 2010 at 11:14 am

    and Brian's got 6 kids, i think its 6. I'll agree–we really should only refer to her as Mrs. Srivastav.

  • 97. wolfinlv  |  September 28, 2010 at 11:40 am

    I got kicked from that page… Protect marriage: One Man One Woman… months ago for asking hard questions when they had a post about how they only want what's in the bible and I responded with descriptions of Solomon and his wives and concubines, and Abraham and his sister and her serving woman Hagar and several other "non traditional" marriages. And when I asked well if Adam and Eve were the only people created and according to the KJV they only had Cain and Able where did their wives come from… They got mad and didn't respond and then when I pointed that they had yet to answer such simple questions they kicked me off.


  • 98. Rhie  |  September 28, 2010 at 12:22 pm

    Cool *adds to google reader*

  • 99. Richard A. Walter (s  |  September 28, 2010 at 12:27 pm

    Will catch up later.

  • 100. Kate  |  September 28, 2010 at 12:28 pm

    But Richard, we miss you!

  • 101. Michele  |  September 28, 2010 at 10:18 pm

    I am a protestant christan..took the quiz–14/15 ::shame face about missing Jonathan Edwards::

    question though–on #12 isn't it more appropriate to say that most people in Pakistan consider themselves to follow the Islam religion, not Muslim? Picky point I know, but I've been corrected about this before and was curious??

  • 102. Bennett  |  September 29, 2010 at 9:38 am

    NOMexposed is a great website. I love how nom is forced to respond, they had no choice. I also love their attempt at a salt in the wound style back handed thank you for the additional exposure bit. I am sure "thank them" was the first suggestion to come up at their forced damage control meeting. I hear a little wabbit squeaking "Please, Please, eat me if you want even, but whatever you do, please don't throw me into the briar patch."

    Ok OK, in case anyone doesnt know that story, it is "Please, Please, whatever you do, please don't take that wonderful website down, we love all the added exposure. Lie, Lie, Lie. Is that a mortal sin or a venial sin?

    Keep them on the defensive, on the run, attack, attack, attack. I mean that like attacking crime, or bigtry, or inequality to be clear.

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