California ethics panel to investigate National Organization for Marriage

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – In a surprise move, the state of California’s ethics office just announced that it will investigate Fred Karger’s complaint against the anti-gay National Organization for Marriage (NOM).

In his sworn complaint of May 17, Karger alleged that NOM did not report over $340,000 that it raised to pass Proposition 8 four years ago. California joins the state of Maine which is in its third year of its investigation of NOM, the leading anti-gay marriage organization in the country.

Karger received a notification letter dated May 28, 2012 on Tuesday from Gary Winuk, the Chief Enforcement Officer of the California Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC).

The complaint shows that NOM had received 11 large contributions in 2008 that were never reported as required under California election law. That was the year NOM helped lead the effort to pass California’s Proposition 8.

Mitt Romney’s $10,000 contribution never reported

One of the 11 missing contributions was $10,000 from presumptive GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s Alabama PAC.

In addition to the Romney money, there were 10 more contributions NOM did not report, including $150,000 from Michael Casey of Jamestown, R.I., $100,000 from Sean Fiedler of New York City, and $25,000 from NOM Board member Craig Cardon of Mesa, Ariz., a General Authority in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon Church).

NOM must obey the law, Karger says

“The National Organization for Marriage has spent tens of millions of dollars to take marriage rights away from millions of Americans over the last four years,” said Karger, who is also responsible for the NOM investigation in Maine and the 2010 FPPC successful prosecution of the Mormon Church on 13 counts of election fraud. “NOM is allowed to participate in these elections, but it must obey all state and federal laws and report where all of its money is coming from. Once again it looks like they got caught.”

Rights Equal Rights will be watching

“Now as NOM funds the four anti-gay marriage elections this fall in Minnesota, Washington, Maryland and Maine, I will be watching them closely. Under the leadership of Maggie Gallagher and Brian Brown, NOM is relentless in its desire to harm people and apparently thinks that it is above the law. I will continue to monitor their activities in every state where it wages its war against the LGBT community,” Karger said.

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