Minn. Marriage Group Puts Up Billboards for Referendum Campaign

An organization advocating for Minnesota to vote in favor of a constitutional amendment defining marriage as being between one man and one woman has posted several billboards across the state.

"The billboards are an important segment of our campaign as they inform the voter that a Yes vote is a vote that protects marriage as between a man and a woman and that kids need a mother and a father," said Chuck Darrell, communications director for Minnesota for Marriage.

"Most of the 20 plus billboards are being placed throughout the Twin Cities metro area. Billboards have also been placed in St. Cloud, Rochester and Duluth."

The billboards – which support the marriage amendment set to be voted on come Nov. 6 – feature photos of couples and families with the words "Marriage = One Man + One Woman" and "Vote YES."

In addition to the billboards, Darrell told CP that his organization would be running several pro-amendment TV ads in the state beginning in October.

"We are thankful to our many supporters who have donated thousands of dollars to make this advertising possible," said John Helmberger, chairman of Minnesota for Marriage, in a statement.

"Our new billboards are a tool to help spread the word that children need their mothers and fathers and that marriage needs to be protected in Minnesota."

For its part Minnesotans United for All Families, the organization opposed to the marriage amendment, has recently announced raising over $5.96 million since the start of the year.

"We are incredibly proud of the support Minnesotans are showing for our efforts," said Richard Carlbom, campaign manager for Minnesotans United, in a statement.

"Real Minnesotans would be hurt by this amendment, including thousands of families who are being devalued by supporters of the amendment. Minnesotans know this amendment is wrong, and they're making a personal investment in the efforts to defeat it."

By contrast, since January Minnesota for Marriage has raised $1,195,652 from donors and boasts of distributing 50,000 "VOTE YES" yard signs.

Minnesotans United has also already been running several TV ads against the amendment, including one featuring a Republican Catholic couple.

Minnesota's referendum is one of several ballot initiatives taking place in November across the country regarding same-sex marriage. Voters in Washington and Maryland will decide by public referendum if their recently passed same-sex marriage legalization bills shall remain. Maine voters will vote on a ballot initiative to legalize same-sex marriage.

According to a SurveyUSA poll taken in July, 52 percent of Minnesota voters support the marriage amendment, while 37 percent are opposed to it.

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