The Seattle Times Co. has donated
$75,000 in advertising to the campaign to approve Referendum 74,
the Washington state referendum which asks voters to uphold – or
reject – a gay marriage law approved by lawmakers.
The pro-gay marriage ads are an in-kind
contribution to Washington United for Marriage, which is working to
approve the measure.
Foes of marriage equality condemned the
The Times decision is “a
stunning example of journalistic bias, greed and stupidity,” said
Frank Schubert, campaign director for Preserve Marriage Washington.
He added that the paper had “abandoned any pretense of
Seattle Times executives said in
a news release that the decision was made by the corporate side of
The Times, and was “completely separate from the journalism
functions of the newspaper.”
Alan Fisco, Seattle Times
executive vice president, called the ads a pilot project designed to
help generate revenue by showing the power of newspaper political
According to The
Times, a dozen news staff members had signed onto a letter
protesting the decision.
The project also includes an ad
campaign promoting Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob McKenna.