Meanwhile, Prop 8 Supporters Not Immune from Disclosure Law

Meanwhile, Prop 8 Supporters Not Immune from Disclosure Law

Even as the battle over Proposition 8’s constitutionality and release of video recordings of the 2010 district court trial continues at the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, a federal judge in Sacramento has ruled that two leading groups that pushed the 2008 ballot amendment are not exempt from California state campaign finance laws.

The October 20 decision by District Judge Morrison England Jr., which affects contributions made to the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) and, was a bench ruling, though San Francisco Deputy City Attorney Mollie Lee was quoted in the Los Angeles Times saying a written opinion would be forthcoming.

“The winners here are really the voters of California,” Lee told the newspaper. “The 1st Amendment interest that the judge upheld in his ruling is the interest in having a robust democracy, an informed electorate, and vigorous debate.”

England had earlier rejected the Prop 8 supporters’ motion to temporarily order the removal of the data from the California secretary of state’s website while their case proceeded, saying the disclosure laws protect the public by allowing them to make decisions based on all relevant facts at election time.

According to the LA Times, NOM and together raised “the lion’s share” of the $43.3 million spent to promote Prop 8.”

— Paul Schindler