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Group Willing to Pay To Stop the Legalization of Gay Marriage

Posted at: 02/25/2013 9:41 PM
Updated at: 02/25/2013 10:43 PM
By: Steph Crock

(ABC 6 News) -- (ABC 6 NEWS) -- A national group opposed to gay marriage says it'll spend half a million dollars to stop Republican lawmakers in Minnesota from voting for it.

The announcement comes just days after a Republican Senator announced he'll support gay marriage, even introducing legislation to make it happen. Representative Branden Petersen is the first Republican to signal a yes vote and now he's getting some backlash.

Those in support of same sex marriage call the move by NOM, a scare tactic. Those behind it say they simply want to prevent Minnesota Republicans from going against their word.

It was the same group that forked out more than $2 million to help fund last fall's failed campaign to ban gay marriage in Minnesota. "Supporting initiatives that define marriage as a union between a man and a women, but we also work to held legislators accountable," said President Brian Brown with the National Organization for Marriage.

Which is why NOM came forward once Senator Peterson said he supports gay marriage. “This is a clear part of the Republican party platform. Peterson and others did not run on redefining marriage,” said Brown.

However, some think it was a move we may see more of this legislative session. “I think this fits right in with sort of the growing Republican Party," said Republican activist Chris Holloway. He's the perfect example of that. He's a Republican activist, who is also gay and has been with his partner for 6 years.

He worked on the “Vote No” campaign last fall and doesn't see this as a huge threat. "While it will have somewhat of an impact I think the voters of Minnesota who overwhelmingly opposed this amendment will have more of an impact," said Holloway.

This half a million dollar warning doesn't focus on voters, but lawmakers. NOM says it's wrong for lawmakers to go against what they campaigned for. "Now to turn around and essentially slap their constituents in the face, it’s not acceptable," said Brown.

Those in office have made it clear, lawmakers can support what they want. "The leaders of both the House and Senate, the minority leaders on the Republican side, said that there would be no retributions against any Republican Legislators who come out in support of this bill," said Holloway.

The National Organization for Marriage says it will also financially support Democrats who vote against legalizing gay marriage. Bills to legalize gay marriage are likely to be introduced at the capitol this week.