American Foundation for Equal Rights

Marriage News Blog

One of the Most Important Republican Donors is on a Mission: Marriage Equality

He’s an unsung hero of the fight for marriage equality.

Billionaire hedge fund manager and major Republican donor Paul Singer helped raise over $1 million for AFER’s federal challenge to Prop. 8 at a 2010 event in New York City, which brought together bipartisan groups from the legal and business communities.

His support has been critical in many state fights, by helping gain support from key Republican legislators, The New York Times notes:

“He has given nearly $10 million of his own money to gay-rights initiatives, including the same-sex marriage efforts not only in New York, but also in New Hampshire and New Jersey. And that figure doesn’t include his assistance in tapping a broad network of donors for individual candidates. He was pivotal in rounding up about $250,000 apiece for the Republican state senators in New York whose votes for same-sex marriage provided its margin of victory in the Legislature.”

Now, Singer is setting his sights on a new endeavor – getting more Republicans who support marriage equality elected.

“Now, Singer says, he’s providing $1 million to start a new “super PAC” with several Republican compatriots. Named American Unity PAC, its sole mission will be to encourage Republican candidates to support same-sex marriage, in part by helping them to feel financially shielded from any blowback from well-funded groups that oppose it.”

Singer, whose son is gay, believes that marriage equality is part of his conservative ideals:

“[He] said that it ‘very well fits within my framework of freedom,’ adding that it promotes ‘family stability’ and is a tribute to an institution in need of one.”

Asked about Singer’s efforts, AFER Co-founder Chad Griffin told The New York Times reporter Frank Bruni:

 “It’s absolutely necessary…We will never win marriage equality without bipartisan support.”

Image: World Economic Forum/Flickr Creative Commons