ACLU Ad Campaign Urges Republicans to Come Out for Freedom

State-Based Effort Will Bring Republicans "Into the Party" for Equality

June 27, 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: 212-549-2666, media@aclu.org

NEW YORK – The American Civil Liberties Union today formally launched its "Out for Freedom" campaign with ads in The Wall Street Journal and conservative web sites, urging Republicans to help strike down barriers to the freedom to marry across the country. The ad launch follows yesterday's historic Supreme Court decisions paving the way for the freedom to marry for same-sex couples.

"We are going to bring Republicans into the ever-increasing groundswell of support for the freedom to marry," said ACLU Executive Director Anthony D. Romero. "Today begins the next step in the movement for full marriage equality for all Americans, and we need everyone, including Republicans, 'at the party' for freedom and fairness."

The full-page color ad in today's Wall Street Journal features states attending a party, with a door manned by Republican elephants. Inside the party are the 13 states with marriage equality, including a newly-arrived California, while the 37 others wait impatiently outside. The ad urges Republicans to come out for freedom, joining other prominent conservatives who support all Americans' freedom to marry. The initial online ad buy includes The Wall Street Journal's web site as well as conservative online hub DailyCaller.com.

The ACLU recently hired Edelman Vice Chairman of Public Affairs Steve Schmidt, who held prominent roles in the 2004 Bush and 2008 McCain campaigns to spearhead the Out for Freedom campaign. GOProud.org founder Jimmy LaSalvia has also been recruited to lead outreach efforts to gay conservatives and Tea Party supporters.

"The Republican party stands for freedom, for limited government intrusion in our personal lives," said Schmidt. "The issue of marriage equality is the Republican Party's best chance to stand on the right side of history, create a meaningful legacy of fairness, and maintain relevance with young voters. I am proud to help the ACLU make all couples equal in the eyes of the law in all 50 states."

The ads were designed by Purpose, an agency with offices in New York, London and Rio de Janeiro. Purpose works with organizations and progressive businesses to mobilize large-scale, purposeful action, combining cutting-edge technology, organizing tools, and brand strategy.

The Out for Freedom campaign will, over the next four years, advance marriage legislation in Illinois, New Jersey, Hawaii, and other states, and challenge constitutional bans on marriage for same-sex couples in Oregon, Nevada, and elsewhere.The ACLU aims to spend roughly $10 million through 2016.

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