New Ballot Measure Group Forms:
Against Amendment C,
Against the GOP

Denise Ross noted over at Mt. Blogmore that a group has now formed to try to defeat Amendment C (.pdf alert) - the amendment passed by the legislature in 2005 to appear on the 2006 ballot regarding the definition of marriage.

Their page, at is apparently still under construction, but it indicates that they are taking the standpoint that the current law should stay the same, and it's a large basis for their opposition.

I don't know that any official group has formed to promote the measure, but I'm assuming their argument for the measure would be that the problem isn't with South Dakota law, it's with other states passing laws on domestic partnerships, and the legality of whether we would recognize them or not.

I wasn't familiar with the Director of this effort, Jon Hoadley, or the organization. A cursory "whois search" of the domain name shows that the person or organization who registered the web name has chosen to remain private.

As far as the rest of my web search; it was pretty fruitful on his background as an activist in Michigan, but the thing that got my attention was something else.
In doing my research, I’m noticing a bit of difference between the public face that Mr. Hoadley is espousing against Amendment C, and his private thoughts. First, the public face from his website:
On November 7, 2006, South Dakota voters will make a historic choice. One of the items on the ballot is Amendment C, an anti-marriage amendment that changes South Dakota’s constitution not only to define marriage as between a man and a woman, but also to prohibit the state from recognizing domestic partnerships, civil unions, and "quasi-marital" relationships.


The most important thing to remember about Amendment C is that voting "yes" or voting "no" will not change the legality of "gay marriage" in South Dakota; that is already against the law. It will not prevent federal judges from reviewing the constitutionality of bans on "gay marriage." And it will not decrease the number of divorces in South Dakota. Voting "no" keeps things the way they are now—without "gay marriage" and without any unintended consequences.
Not that I'm in favor of his position, but it appears he's trying to make a point using reason and logic. Contrast that with the more private thoughts he’s sharing about the measure on the Democratic Underground website:
Republicans are attempting to divide the people of South Dakota with a bitter, anti-gay amendment on next year's ballot. Faced with this challenge, many national organizations have chosen to ignore South Dakota because they see our state as too conservative. Thankfully, National Stonewall Democrats (*see below -pp) is committed to LGBT Americans who call South Dakota home.

Stonewall is helping South Dakotans Lead

Stonewall is taking action. They are helping those of us in South Dakota form the statewide network we need to counter right-wing activists. No other group is doing this. I'm asking that you take this moment to help the Stonewall Democrats help those of us in South Dakota.


Let's not concede the frontlines in the fight for equality. Help train the army of volunteers we need. And send a strong and clear message to the right-wing extremists - our community is prepared to fight passionately and strategically to secure our basic rights as Americans, and the right-wing will get not get a free pass anywhere when they threaten our freedom and equality.

Thank you,
Jon Hoadley

Jon Hoadley is a native of Vermillion, South Dakota. He is a student at Michigan State University, and a board member of the National Stonewall Democrats. Jon's work has created five Stonewall chapters in Michigan alone. Now, following graduation, he is returning this winter to South Dakota to organize the statewide network of activists who will fight the Republican anti-gay ballot initiative in 2006.
Just slightly less generous towards the Republican majority than the rhetoric on his anti-Amendment C website, isn’t it?

But in his zeal to spew venom on all things Republican, Mr. Hoadley is just leaving out a couple of minor details. What would those be? Well, if you can look past the pitchforks, demonic horns and tails that all of us Republicans sport, it is noteworthy to mention that several Democrats also sponsored the measure (2005's HRJ 1001):
Representatives Bradford, Dennert, Gassman, Gillespie, Glenski, Halverson, Hargens, Kroger, Lange, Miles and Senators Bartling, Bogue, Moore, Napoli, Peterson (Jim), and Sutton (Dan)
And amazingly enough, that list includes the House Democratic Minority Leader, the House Democratic Assistant Minority Leader, and a House Democratic Minority Whip. Glancing over to the Senate side, it also includes all but one member of the Democratic minority leadership - There's the Democratic Minority Leader, the Democratic Assistant Minority Leader, and a Democratic Minority Whip.

But I guess he just conveniently forgot about those in his own party who sponsored the measure in his effort to label this apparently bi-partisan measure as “Republicans.. attempting to divide the people of South Dakota with a bitter, anti-gay amendment.”

It will be interesting to see which of his faces that Mr. Hoadley will be presenting out on the campaign trail – the one speaking in reasonable, carefully crafted sentences, or the face spewing out anti-Republican rhetoric, while ignoring his own party’s involvement in the measure.

(* for the uninformed, Stonewall Democrats are a GBLT Auxiliary organization for Democrats. Their Republican counterparts are the Log Cabin Republicans.)


Anonymous said…
PP – just a factual correction. Of the 14 democrats you listed as sponsors, only 7 actually voted for the bill. Neither of the leaders voted for the bill.
Anonymous said…
one question I've always had for people who are in favor of "banning gay marriage" is this: why?

what exactly is it?
PP said…
Anon -

Good point. Which goes to show you, you can change the name of a bill but sponsorship is forever.
Anonymous said…
I thought he was railing against right-wing extremists, not the GOP. What have you posted that would suggest he was spewing vemom at all things Republican?

More notably, he was arguing against right-wing extremists in the specific arena of gay marriage. I'm not sure touting the Dems who have supported this amendment does anything to suggest he isn't fighting them too. If they are right-wing extremists on this issue, that is. And if they really support the amendment, maybe they are.

I'm not going to judge the pros and cons of the amendment. Just that his DU post doesn't seem that full of venom.
PP said…
Anon #2, did you not read it?

"Republicans are attempting to divide the people of South Dakota with a bitter, anti-gay amendment on next year's ballot"

"fight the Republican anti-gay ballot initiative in 2006."

I might be sloppy at times, but I wouldn't have said it if it wasn't there.

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