Proponents of gay marriage in
California released new ads Wednesday attacking GOP candidates Meg
Whitman and Steve Cooley for supporting the state's gay marriage ban,
In the ads, sponsored
by California's largest gay rights advocate, Equality California,
Whitman, who is running for governor, and Cooley, the GOP's nominee
for attorney general, are blasted for saying they would defend the
gay marriage ban in court.
“Shame on Meg Whitman” for being
willing to spend possibly millions defending Proposition 8 when
California is suffering from big budget woes and high unemployment, a
male announcer says in one ad.
The script is nearly identical in the
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, a
Republican, and Whitman's Democratic rival, Attorney General Jerry
Brown, have refused to defend the 2008 voter-approved gay ban, which
was ruled unconstitutional last month.
In remarks made before speaking at the
opening of the state's three-day GOP convention in San Diego last
month, Whitman, a former CEO of eBay.com, made it clear that as
governor she would have handled the situation differently.
She said the men have an obligation to
defend the Constitution and to “enable the judicial process to go
“So if I was governor, I would give
that ruling standing to be able to appeal to the circuit court,”
Cooley said that he would defend the
gay marriage ban in court because the “proper role of an attorney
general is to enforce and defend the will of the people as manifested
through the initiative or legislative process.”
The decision “should be appealed and
tested at a higher level of our legal system,” Cooley said in a
statement. “The California Supreme Court upheld Proposition 8 by a
6 to 1 vote and declared it to be constitutional. Likewise, if the
voters had approved an initiative legalizing same-sex marriage and a
federal judge had ruled against it, I would also support an appeal of
Cooley's rival, Democrat Kamala Harris,
has promised to “never defend the anti-LGBT Proposition 8 in
Both ads will begin airing in five
major California markets – Los Angeles, San Francisco, Sacramento,
San Diego and Palm Springs – next week, Equality California said.