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James Dobson's Focus on the Family praises Prop. 8 and passes the collection plate

Focus on the Family, the evangelical organization based in Colorado that led the fight to ban same-sex marriage in California, sees no need to hide its light -- and pass the collection plate again.

The conservative organization's founder, James Dobson, was highly critical of John McCain, until he wasn't. Then Dobson became particularly enamored of  Sarah Palin. And finally, the group spent money to defeat Barack Obama.James_dobson

That didn't work out so well. But whatever disappointment it might have over Obama’s victory, the group is proclaiming “a victory that could shape millions of lives for generations to come.”

The victory, of course, was passage of Proposition 8, which created a constitutional amendment defining marriage as being between one man and one woman.

In an e-mail signed by Tom Minnery, senior vice president for government and public policy, Focus says the measure “helps protect millions of children from radical indoctrination in the homosexual lifestyle,” and “safeguards religious liberty in our most populous state.”

“From the earliest strategic discussions, to the monumental task of gathering a million-plus signatures, to the campaign itself, Focus on the Family has been integrally involved,” the e-mail says.

The group was “able to invest more than $550,000” in the campaign, providing what it called seed money to help “launch a pro-marriage campaign that was unparalleled in its magnitude.”

Here’s how it characterizes its effort:

Helped found (in 2003) the organization that led this campaign;
Paid for early polling to determine the best ballot language and strategy;
Assisted with a major fundraising event for the campaign;
Encouraged pastors to get involved (which they did in remarkable ways);
Aired broadcasts urging financial and prayer support from around the country; and
Provided major coverage of the campaign via radio, Internet, mail and Focus magazines.

None of that came for free. And so the missive ended as such missives always do -- with the ask.

“As we prepare for what may be a challenging year of ministry, now would be a great time to invest in Focus on the Family.”

-- Dan Morain

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Photo credit: Andrew Rushi / Associated Press

Comments () | Archives (20)

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Prop 8 was largely won by out-of-state money and door to door soldiers from the Mormon church. Please go to as part of a grassroots effort to get the Mormon (LDS) church tax exempt status revoked. I hate that Prop 8 passed, hate that my son cried and asked if we could no longer live as a family, and while taking this effort is not satisfying enough, it is a start. "Follow the money" was the phrase in "All the President's Men" which led to the downfall of corruption - let's all do the same here. The Mormon church's activities, often underhanded, must be understood, must be stopped. Taking away their tax exempt status is the first step - if they're largely responsible for spreading the lies, the least we can do is spread the truth.

It's both funny and tragic that Focus on the Family claims to want to "safeguard religious liberty." The fact is that California has legislated into law Focus on the Family's religious belief that only marriage between a man and a woman is legitimate.

With this constitutional amendment, MY religious liberty has been destroyed.

Prop 8 does many things. Safeguarding liberty - of any kind - is not one of them. Claiming that it is is just another example of right wing fanatics twisting reality to justify forcing their extreme agenda upon society.

Get out of our state's business Focus!!! ..... Spew your rhetoric in Colorado

The Roman Catholic church almost burnt Galileo when he said that the earth was revolving around the sun and it didn't fit with the bible. Most philosophers had to turn to God for the unexplained. Religions have always thrived on ignorance and to make sure of this education has always been dispensed by the religious powers that be. Aren't some of the best schools Roman Catholic and managed by the Jesuits those soldiers of God? Freedom goes together with knowledge not superstitions. Shame on these churches involving themselves into politics with proposition 8 they convinced people from the pulpit to act the way they wanted just like the Taliban are doing to kill Americans. Today the homosexuals, tomorrow the non believers and free thinkers and women's lib.
Churches are no democracies keep this in mind.

The article is peculiar in more than its obvious bias toward homosexual entitlement to marriage. The reporter seems to find fault with Focus on the Family attempting to influence public opinion in exactly the same manner that everyone else attempts to influemce it. This is childish. Focus has the right to solicit donations to make its voice heard, just like everybody else. Freedom of expression is not for the annointed few.

Proposition 8 has passed. Nothing nefarious here. The majority of Californians have decded not to give the status of marriage to homosexual coahbitation. No one has been denied a single right. If you would like to marry, you may marry tomorrow, only you must marry a person of the opposite sex. If you wish to cohabit with a person of the same sex, there is not a law in California which will prevent you, except those which prevent pedophilia. Surely we all agree on that. RIght? If you wish to have your same sex cohabitations ratified, "blessed", there are many Episcopalians who would be glad to accommodate you. No one is denied anything. Homosexual cohabitation is completely tolerated. More than this, California was not required to do.

California is not required to admire homosexual cohabitation. We do not need to teach it to school children. We need not call it marriage. No one is entitled to my admiration. I am not required to admire your behavior and you need not admire mine. We both have the same rights. Co -habitating heterosexuals do not make this fuss. If homosexual cohabitation is so worthy, let virtue be its own reward.

Focus on the Family is widely known to be nothing but an Anti-Gay group.

I for one would like to thank Focus on the Family and the Mormon church for taking such an effective leadership role in defeating so-called same-sex marriage in California. The people have spoken...twice....whether you like it or not.

I love how the PRO PROP 8 people say it's about
"protecting the children" and that they don't want the "children to be "taught" the gay lifestyle, yet they bring the kids to these rally's?!?!

Aren't the kid's asking what "Gay" is? , What do you tell them? So isn't that "educating and exposing" the innocent children to and about the gays?

The "gays" aren't going anywhere! We will still be here, we will still get married whether or not the state chooses to call it that, we will still be ALL OVER the Tv, in Music videos, Songs, Books, movies, internet, and they WILL learn about us at the schools, because guess what? GAY KIDS ALSO GO TO SCHOOL.

Anything i ever learned about sex (at least the good stuff) was from my friends and the kids at school. SO WILL YOUR "INNOCENT" CHILDREN.

For something so disgusting and unnatural you people sure are worried your kids will find appeal in being queer. Why would they ever go there if it was as unnatural and disgusting as you claim.

Your kids will be who they are . like it or not..,

you will also tell them how bad booze and drugs are and they will try that as well. After they see how great it is to be high and drunk, maybe they will rethink all the other things you told them were no good as possibly having something to it!

Have Fun!

I'll bet that this church doesn't suffer half as much persecution as the Mormon Church is facing right now. Why is that? I really don't get why the "Mormons" are being targeted so much. If you're going to target one religion, you've got to target them all. At least they stand up for what they believe in.

This is such a touchy subject and either side loosing would have meant that about 50% of California is unhappy. But if the proposition hadn't passed the "yes" voters wouldn't be burning down churches of the gays and lesbians.

Hopefully America will see how easily liberals loose their tempers and turn to violence and realize that maybe a move to a more liberal society isn't best in the long run. I'm all for peace.

Thank you for being courageous in the stand against gay marriages. God DOES love everyone but He does NOT love sexual immorality.

Marriage is between a man and a woman for a reason. It is a common sense definition. This social experiment that attempts to redefine the family hurts everyone. Our lives are a gift and a clear pattern has been given on how to live it happily. To prop up a deviant version of the pattern invites further deviation. A man and a woman should raise children in what we all know is a family. New and "exciting" versions of this are only a mirage. Respect democracy! The people of California have voted. All laws are based on moral principles. We may disagree about right and wrong, but the majority has ruled. Respect Proposition 8! It is the law because most people wanted it to be. The strident minority can't always prevail by yelling the loudest. The people have spoken.

I find if fascinating that the greatest legislation against gay marriage came from the people. In America's largest state, citizens overwhelmingly voted that they do not want to live, or have their children live among people who go against the laws of nature, and nature's God. Proposition 8 is a constitutional amendment; the strongest law in the United States, reflecting democracy at it's greatest. Only the people can create such a law, and the people have spoken. California will not have homosexual marriage!

Maybe this will encourage Californians to finally stay out of other state's business as well. Some of the props written for AZ by California lawyers have been utterly ridiculous.

Focus on the Family was solely responsible for Colorado's Amendment 2 which was passed by a majority vote. Google ROMER V EVANS to see how our supreme court dealt with Focus on the Family's Constitutional Amendment. Does this religious organization also receive tax credits? How can we strip them of their tax credits as well?

The people have not spoken! Money from outside of California has spoken.

The gay community has shown their true colors in their response to the passing of Prop 8. While on one side of the street they scream vulgarities & hateful language, those who are pro-family stand firmly but quietly by. Theirs is the true hate!

Marriage could be like it is in other countries, where the churches don't do the legal marriages, that is done at the court house.

I'm impressed (NOT) that Dr. Dobson, et al, believes that God made some people inferior to others.

Just in case you don't realize it, Dr. Dobson is not a Mormon, and his Focus on the Family group is a very impressive organization from the Evanglical Christian community. I am pleased that so many religious groups worked together to preserve the values this nation was founded upon. Standing up for moral righteousness is not bigotry!

This is the ultimate battle over nothing. Gays have the same rights and responsibilities of spouses if they have a legal domestic partnership. Read the law: Family Code 297.5(a). So what we have done here is spend MILLIONS of dollars to stop from redefining a word. With all the problems in our world today, this is truly IDIOTIC, on both sides. Gays should just create a new name for the "partnerships" and be done with it.

The only winners here are those who run political campaigns and those who make signs for them.


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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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