The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) has
dropped the equality rating of a law firm over partner Cleta
Mitchell's repping of anti-gay marriage group the National
Organization for Marriage (NOM).
Mitchell, a partner at D.C.-based Foley
and Lardner, will lobby on behalf of NOM in Minnesota, the Minnesota
Independent reported. Mitchell registered as a lobbyist at
the Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board and is
expected to lobby the board on behalf of NOM, which is keen on
avoiding disclosure of its donors as it campaigns for a proposed
constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriage in Minnesota.
On Tuesday, HRC, the nation's largest
gay rights group, informed the law firm that it would no longer be
recognized as a gay-friendly employer.
“In a time when major corporations,
including the nation's top law firms, are taking unprecedented
strides in support of LGBT equality with regards to their workplace
practices and business activities, your firm has regrettably taken a
notable step backwards,” HRC wrote in a letter to CEO Jay Rothman.
“In the 2010 [Corporate Equality Index], Foley & Lardner
achieved a perfect 100 score. In the 2012 CEI to be released next
month, your firm will drop further to a 60, one of the lowest scores
earned by an Am Law firm in the upcoming report.”
Earlier this year, gay
GOP group GOProud Chairman Chris Barron got into hot water after he
called Mitchell a “nasty bigot” during an interview.