Who’s Behind Prop 8 (other than the Mormons)

It’s no secret that Mormons are a tremendous force behind funding for the Yes on 8 Campaign. According to Mormons for Proposition 8, 46% of contributions to the campaign (about $10 million) have come from Mormons. But there are other major players.

Of the ten principal contributors to the Prop 8 campaign, two are based in California. Clearly, this battle is not seen as mere California politics by many Americans. There are significant forces who are doing their best to push Prop 8 through, to see to it that government continues to evolve into a Church-of-State. Californians will have to overcome these powers of bigotry and big government to continue the progress of this land of liberty and equal opportunity; this state that has been said to be “America, only moreso.”

Vote No on Proposition 8!

The principal (non-Mormon) contributors to the the Church-of-State Campaign:

  1. National Organization for Marriage, Princeton, NJ: $1441k
  2. Knights of Columbus, New Haven, CT: $1150k
  3. Fieldstead and Co., Irvine, CA: $1095k
  4. Edgar and Elsa Prince Foundation, Holland, MI: $650k
  5. Former state senator Robert Hurtt & Container Supply Co., Inc, Garden Grove, CA: $527k
  6. American Family Association, Inc., Tupelo, MS: $500k
  7. Focus on the Family, Colorado Springs, CO: $467k
  8. John Templeton Foundation, Bryn Mawr, PA: $450k
  9. Concerned Women for America, Washington, DC: $409k

Some notes on these principal contributors:

The National Organization for Marriage signs its checks as a resident of Santa Ana, CA, but that is only a branch. The headquarters is in New Jersey.

The Knights of Columbus is “the world’s foremost Catholic fraternal benefit society.”

Fieldstead & Company of Irvine, CA has been called the “Paymaster to the political right” by the Orange County Register.

The Edgar and Elsa Prince Foundation is funded with money from Prince Automotive. Edgar Prince co-founded the Family Research Council with neoconservative Gary Bauer. The current head of the foundation, Edgar and Elsa’s son Erik, is also the founder and owner of Blackwater USA.

Two separate contributors from reportedly from Garden Grove, CA, Robert Hurtt & Container Supply Co., Inc, appear to be one and the same: the former state senator from Garden Grove is a perennial contributor to conservative causes, and a big fan of James Dobson.

“The American Family Association exists to motivate and equip citizens to change the culture to reflect Biblical truth and traditional family values.”

The Templeton Foundation is noted for its Templeton Prize, which “honors a living person who has made an exceptional contribution to affirming life’s spiritual dimension.” The founder, John Templeton, was interested in answers to questions such as “How large is God? How are finite beings related to the infinite? What was God’s purpose in creating the universe?” He was also interested in the question “what is the best way to live?” His answer appears to be that the best way to live is for government to dictate to citizens how they must live.

Concerned Women for America is dedicated to bringing “Biblical principles into all levels of public policy.”

7 comments on “Who’s Behind Prop 8 (other than the Mormons)

  1. aaron says:

    It is interesting that we as a state, society have to define what marriage is. It is weird, but what do you expect. If two guys two girls want to have the right to be married and have a life together even have the benefits of marriage But to say the institution of marriage has to be redefined is, well, I just don’t understand. equal rights under the law is good. but to force people to say marriage is whatever you want it to be. I wonder if it will end with only two guys to girls have the right under the law.
    It is a moral issue being forced on people Christians Mormons whoever. Maybe everyone disagrees. I guess will find out in a few weeks.

  2. Dan Jensen says:

    Hi Aaron.

    My perspective on this is a rather libertarian one. I don’t to look to the government for morality, because I believe it to be immoral to do so. It’s fine for government to defend us against terrorists and rogue bankers, but the government is not there to guide our private lives. The more that we as Americans legislate morality, the more our government will become our God; our golden calf, to put it in Biblical terms.


  3. Dan Jensen says:

    Here’s a correction on the Templeton campaign contribution.

    I had seen “John Templeton” of Bryn Mawr, PA in the records, so, knowing John Templeton to be recently deceased, I assumed the donation must have been made by Templeton’s foundation, but it now appears that Templeton’s son, John Templeton Jr., is the one who made the contribution, so perhaps the Templeton Foundation ought not be associated with the Prop 8 campaign.

  4. Gary Rosen says:

    Just to follow up on Dan Jensen’s post above: the contributions for Proposition 8 have been made by John Templeton, Jr. as a private citizen. They are strictly personal contributions and have nothing to do with the John Templeton Foundation. The Foundation does not endorse or support political causes or candidates.

    Gary Rosen
    Chief External Affairs Officer
    John Templeton Foundation

  5. Dan Jensen says:

    Here’s an update on the Templeton contributions. As noted above by Gary Rosen (and yours truly, several days ago), I was mistaken in attributing John Templeton Jr’s contributions to the foundation of which he is the CEO. According to Richard Dalton’s AP database, Mr. Templeton has contributed $900,000 to the same-sex marriage ban, and his wife Josephine has contributed $300,000.

    Source: http://www.sfgate.com/webdb/prop8/

  6. Dan Jensen says:

    A few more adjustments:

    Focus on the Family has now contributed $566,000 to the marriage ban.
    The National Organization for Marriage is up to $1.56 million.
    Knights of Columbus is over $1.42 million.
    Fieldstead And Co. is at nearly $1.4 million.
    Hurtt and his Container Supply are at $553,000.

    And Prop 8 has a new major contributor: Alan Ashton of Lindon, Utah has contributed $1 million to the marriage ban campaign. Ashton is reported to be a grandson of a deceased “president-prophet” of the Mormon Church, and a co-founder of WordPerfect. I’m guessing that he was involved in Ashton-Tate as well.


  7. s.fitzsimmons says:

    Hey Dan, John Templeton Jr, who made the contributions is the Chairman and President of the Board of Trustees of the Templeton Foundation. Mr. Rosen somewhat dissimulates as to the private nature of the donation.
    Because of John Templeton Jr’s position, the foundation is indeed tarnished as the aspect of its scientific mission is severely compromised. Dr. Templeton should step down if not resign or the other board members should resign in protest.

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