Wednesday, March 12, 2014
Erick Bennett, a Republican who worked on Gov. Paul LePage's campaign and ran as a write-in for Portland mayor, says he intends to form a new political action committee to oppose gay marriage.
The Maine Marriage Allies PAC, based in Portland, will soon become official with a filing at the ethics commission, Bennett announced late Monday.
"This is the fourth time they tried to pass gay marriage in Maine after both sides spent almost ten million dollars neither was able to explain what the issue was about," he wrote in a press release.
By fourth time, he is referring to two votes to add gays and lesbians to the protected classes listed in the Maine Human Rights Act and the 2009 vote to repeal gay marriage, 53-47 percent.
Calling himself the Maine Equal Rights Center, Bennett said he wants to provide a website and Facebook page so people can discuss all the issues surrounding gay marriage "so Mainers can cast an informed vote to defeat gay marriage in November."
"The Maine Equal Rights Center supports the people of faith that want to protect what they consider the sanctity of marriage, but we also support same sex couples getting the legal benefits everyone else does," he wrote.
Last week, I covered a conference in Saco where religious leaders who support gay marriage gathered to talk about how best to help pass the ballot question this time around. Other supporters include the Maine Civil Liberties Union, Maine Peoples Alliance and the Maine Women's Lobby.
Bennett's group is the third distinct effort in opposition. The National Organization for Marriage and Christian Civic League have joined together to fight the ballot question, and Michael Heath and Paul Madore say they too will have their own group in opposition.Tweet
Open Season targets all of Maine's political wildlife, from Portland city government to the donkeys, elephants and independents stalking the Statehouse and U.S. Capitol.
John Richardson joined the Press Herald in 1990 after working as a reporter in New Jersey. He has covered a variety of beats, including marine issues, the environment and health care. He is now covering politics and focusing on Maine's U.S. Senate race.
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Colin Woodard has covered politics and elections for more than two decades, from Bosnia and Bucharest to Washington, D.C., Augusta, and Portland City Hall. He has written for a wide range of national and international publications and is the author of four books, including "American Nations," a history of North America's regional cultures. He joined the Portland Press Herald at the end of April and covers political finance and lobbying, among other things.
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Susan Cover has covered Maine politics for 10 years and worked in Kansas, Ohio and Rhode Island as a reporter. This year, she is focusing on covering the same-sex marriage debate for MaineToday Media.
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Michael Shepherd joined MaineToday Media in May 2012 after graduating from the University of Maine in Orono, where he edited The Maine Campus, the student newspaper there. Until November he'll be writing the Truth Test, a recurring feature analyzing political statements and advertising.
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