African-Americans were a key demographic in helping approve a gay marriage law in Maryland, reversing previous trends.

Seventy percent of blacks voted in favor of California's gay marriage ban, Proposition 8, when it passed in 2008. And surveys from the Pew Research Center found in 2008 and 2009 that only 28 percent of African-Americans backed the institution.

Those statistics led the National Organization for Marriage (NOM), the nation's most vociferous opponent of gay marriage, to heavily target the demographic.

In a two-pronged strategy to defeat marriage equality at the polls and boost Mitt Romney's presidential aspirations, NOM supported a group of African-American religious leaders who condemned President Barack Obama's May endorsement of gay nuptials.

“So the president has forgotten the price that was paid [by civil rights activists],” Bill Owens of the Coalition of African-American Pastors (CAAP) said during a press conference. “Where people died, where they suffered, where they gave their blood to have equal rights in the United States. And for the homosexual community and for the president to bow to the money as Judas did to Jesus Christ is a disgrace and we're ashamed.”

In a blog post, Equality Matters' Carlos Maza called CAAP “a NOM front group.”

“CAAP is little more than a front group for NOM, which has an interest in driving the media narrative that being African-American is somehow incompatible with supporting marriage equality,” Maza wrote.

Earlier this year, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation's largest gay rights advocate, posted four of NOM's internal strategic memos from 2009. The memos caused an uproar for stating that the “strategic goal of this project is to drive a wedge between gays and blacks – two key Democratic constituencies.”

In heavily African-American (29%) Maryland, blacks played a major role in passing Question 6. Forty-six percent of blacks voted for the measure, according to The Washington Post.