US: NOM admits it can’t find anyone in Oregon to back defence of same-sex marriage ban

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

The National Organisation for Marriage has admitted it is unable to find anyone willing to back its attempt to defend Oregon’s same-sex marriage ban.

Last month the group filed a last-ditch attempt to defend Oregon’s same-sex marriage ban from a court challenge, after the state’s Attorney General declined to do so.

Despite calls for their request to intervene to be thrown out, judge Michael McShane said he would consider their request to hear the ban.

However, in their new legal brief arguing for the right to defend the marriage ban, the group are unable to publicly name a single person in the state that wants them to do so.

According to Oregon Live, the brief claims that NOM found plenty of opposition among county clerks and businesses, but none of them agreed to be publicly attached to the case because they “fear reprisals”.

NOM insists it still has the right to intervene on behalf of them, even though they are anonymous.

The brief states that NOM “began trying to identify someone who had both the necessary standing to intervene and the willingness to do so in the face of real concerns about threats and reprisals”.

It continues: “A couple of weeks before the scheduled hearing on the motions for summary judgement, NOM’s counsel met with or spoke by phone with the representatives of one or more such businesses and also with one or more county clerks, all of whom expressed strong interest in intervening in the matter but also grave concerns about possible threats, harassment, and retaliation should they do so.

“Ultimately, the potential intervenors advised NOM’s counsel that the risks were just too great to intervene in their own names.”

As the group were unable to find any Oregon-based residents to attach themselves to their intervention, the group’s brief is asking that it “as a membership organization, intervene on behalf of its members”.

(h/t Good As You)