by Mike Andrew -
SGN Staff Writer
The Coalition to Protect All North Carolina Families - the group opposing Amendment One - has a significant fundraising advantage over anti-equality forces, numbers released at the end of April showed.
North Carolina voters will decide on Amendment One - which would bar legal recognition of all same-sex relationships in North Carolina - on May 8.
According to figures released by the North Carolina Board of Elections, the pro-amendment group Vote for Marriage had raised $1,192,278.59, and had $121,271.38 cash on hand.
The Coalition to Protect All NC families had raised almost twice as much, $2,261,849.63, with $293,523.41 left on hand.
That is good news for pro-equality forces as the campaign enters its final week. Polling still shows Amendment One winning, but the margin has been closing.
As expected, the major donors supporting Amendment One are conservative religious groups.
The Christian Action League, a largely Evangelical Protestant organization, donated $309,652.70 to the campaign. The Bayleaf Baptist Church contributed $19,130, and the First Baptist Church of Charlotte gave $15,000.
NOM, which is reportedly financed by the Roman Catholic Church, donated $302,589.52. The Catholic diocese of Charlotte and the diocese of Raleigh each put in $50,000.
The American Family Association contributed $20,000.
Bible merchant Phil Drake was the largest individual contributor to Amendment One, with a $250,000 contribution.
On the pro-equality side, most of the large contributions came from individuals.
Medical supply heir and philanthropist Jon Stryker was the largest single donor, with a $200,000 contribution. Atheist activist Todd Stiefel gave $100,000. SAS Software director Ann B. Goodnight, North Carolina Human Relations Commission executive director John Campbell, and attorney Michael Edwards each gave $25,000.
HRC contributed $196,081.08 to the campaign, and an HRC-created PAC gave $55,000. Blueprint NC, a coalition of 40 advocacy groups put in $104,612.97. The Center for Community Self-Help donated $35,857.24.
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