A new report filed Friday by the Church
of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Mormons) lists more than
$190,000 in expenses by the church in support of California's gay
marriage ban, reports the Los Angeles Times.
Mormon leaders had previously recorded
only $2,078 in contributions towards Proposition 8, the
constitutional amendment that yanked back the right of gays and
lesbians to marry in the state.
In November, the California Fair
Political Practices Commission agreed to investigate a complaint by
Californians Against Hate, a gay rights group that pushed for full
disclosure of monetary support of Prop. 8, that alleged numerous
contribution violations to the campaign to ban gay marriage by the
Utah-based Mormon Church.
Church leaders have previously denied
any monetary involvement in the campaign, saying their members acted
of their own accord in sending millions – by some estimates more
than $25 million – to fight for the gay ban.
“The Church of Jesus Christ of
Latter-day Saints put zero money in this [the passage of Prop. 8],”
Don Eaton, a Mormon Church spokesman, told KGO TV, an ABC affiliate
The Californians Against Hate complaint
underlines numerous violations in California law by the church. They
allege that the costs of get-out-the-vote phone banks in Utah and
Idaho, various mailings to voters, transportation services, marketing
materials – professionally produced commercials hosted on websites
available to the public included – and at least two satellite
broadcasts over five western states were not reported to the state.
The church filing lists tens of
thousands of dollars for expenses such as airline tickets and hotels
for its leaders, along with nearly $97,000 paid to church employees.
“They said they reported all their
travel,” Fred Karger, founder of Californians Against Hate, told the Los Angeles Times, “now, when
there is a [complaint filed] they disclose 25 Southwest tickets just
in October. They were required to report this [in an earlier