Local Democratic Party Pours $125,000 into Same-Sex Marriage Campaign

Untie me. I wanna write a check
We marveled here a few weeks ago at the large amounts of money being raised in an off-election year by the San Francisco Democratic County Central Committee. According to campaign finance reports filed with the California Secretary of State's office, the DCCC raked in $160,000 over the first five months of 2009. By contrast, in 2006 the committee raised $90,000 for the whole year.

We caught up this week with DCCC Treasurer Debra Walker, who had an explanation. Two words (make that a word and a number): Proposition 8. Walker said that $125,000 of the DCCC's $160,000 in contributions have been raised in order to campaign for the legalization of same-sex marriage, which may show up on the state ballot again as early as 2010. (She said the Prop. 8 money is being kept separate from funds for the DCCC's run-of-the-mill political activities.)

"We're trying to make the party relevant, not just during elections, but all the time, and make the party able to react to these kinds of issues," Walker said. She said the DCCC has hired 10 full-time paid canvassers who are going door-to-door locally to raise cash for the cause. So far, the response has been good. The average individual donation since the Supreme Court's ruling upholding Prop. 8 last week has been $350, Walker said. As a result, she said, the canvassing effort is "raising more money than it actually costs."
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