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AFER fact-checks NOM attack ads in marriage battleground states

The National Organization for Marriage (NOM), which has spent tens of millions across the country to prevent gay and lesbian couples from marrying, is ramping up their campaigns in Minnesota and Maine with two new television commercials that make some pretty surprising claims.

During elections, 30-second sound bites are designed to prey on people’s fears and prejudices. But in a court of law, as we saw during the 2010 federal district court trial of Prop. 8, their arguments fall apart when witnesses are compelled to tell the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

Let’s take a look at their claims and the real facts.

First, there’s the usual lie that marriage has remained unchanged for “thousands of years,” which doesn’t even withstand basic scrutiny.

But what do the experts think? Nancy Cott, who is a Harvard history professor, had this to say at the Prop. 8 trial:

The “political coverance purpose of marriage today is — has shifted rather dramatically, because we no longer assume that a single head of household governs everyone below it. We have a much more individualized distribution of political power in our population, particularly since 1920…The institution of marriage has always been at least as much about supporting adults as it has been about supporting minors, children, as the proponents tend to emphasize the child’s side.”

Here’s Dr. Cott’s testimony recreated verbatim by actress Yeardley Smith at the Los Angeles premiere of “8.”

But then there’s an even stranger claim from NOM: that marriage was “made by God” for the purposes of procreation:

Obviously this point doesn’t hold any weight either as people can procreate without marrying. And marry without procreating. Not to mention, the thousands of gay and lesbian parents who are raising children. According to UMass Amherst Professor Lee Badgett’s testimony during the Prop 8 trial:

“Prop. 8 has inflicted substantial economic harm on same-sex couples and their children who live in California.”

NOM also claims that “Marriage is an issue that should be decided by the people,” says narrator Kelly Yanta.

Peoples’ fundamental rights should never be put up for popular vote. And with ads filled with lies, there’s no wonder why.

NOM has indicated that their first attack ad in Maine will launch on Monday. It’s likely to be as accurate and reasonable as their commercials in Minnesota.

To read the original blog, click HERE.