Gary Randall is being sidelined by Washington, D.C.-based National Organization for Marriage, and is trying to look relevant. Why else would he, the president of Faith and Freedom Network, offer this information to the public unless he’s worried that he won’t get credit for his role in the effort to force two anti-gay marriage measures on the November ballot? After touting how many signatures “Friends of Faith and Freedom” have supposedly gathered on R-74 and I-1192 petitions, he reported this:
However, there is some resistance to I-1192, mostly from pastors who have been instructed not to allow them to be made available in their church by people directly involved in the leadership of R-74.
That’s unfortunate, but true.
NOM is “the leadership of R-74″, so NOM is now apparently calling the shots not only for their own ballot measure, but for I-1192 as well. Or rather, NOM isn’t calling the shots for I-1192 so much as it’s trying to shoot it down. And local pastors are apparently doing what the hired guns from D.C. are telling them to do.
Initiative 1192′s primary sponsors are Stephen Pidgeon and Ken Hutcherson, both Washingtonians. Pidgeon filed the official I-1192 paperwork with the state, and Hutcherson is the campaign’s official spokesperson.
|NOM’s man in Washington, Christopher Plante|
This isn’t the first instance of NOM barging in and dictating to the locals how it’s going to be. Recall that right from the beginning, Ken Hutcherson and others were shut out of the R-74 process by NOM’s local figurehead Joseph Backholm, director of Family Policy Institute of Washington. “NOM and Backholm said these others had not been ‘vetted’ and may have said or done something in the past that would be harmful to the campaign,” Randall wrote back in February.
“I consider Steve Pidgeon a friend. And I would eat dinner with him and have him at my house any day of the week,” NOM’s Christopher Plante said to a group of R-74 volunteers in March. Initiative 1192 was “filed by well-meaning people,” Plante said condescendingly.
Plante is director of NOM’s Rhode Island for Marriage and has been sent by NOM to Washington to run the R-74 Preserve Marriage Washington campaign.