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Victory has a thousand fathers, exhibit A

My favorite post-election attempt to take credit for Tuesday's election results comes from the National Organization for Marriage, which e-mails its donors the exciting subject "NOM wins victory in California!" The fundraising letter's narrative explains how, in May, NOM's investment in the race against Tom Campbell paid off.

After a slight dip in March, Tom Campbell had regained a sizeable and consistent lead over opponents Carly Fiorina and Chuck DeVore. The latest poll showed Campbell with a 15-point lead over Fiorina. On May 19th, NOM launched an automated phone campaign to 600,000 likely GOP primary voter households, informing them of Tom Campbell's support for same-sex marriage. We followed up the phone campaign with an internet ad campaign and website: www.StopTomCampbell.com.

Overnight, the next poll, taken May 21-23, showed Carly Fiorina with a startling 23-point lead over Campbell, 46% to 23%, as Campbell's support dropped by one-third.

Certainly there were many factors that played into that dramatic shift -- by that time, pro-life and pro-family advocates had joined together in the effort to stop Tom Campbell, Fiorina campaign ads were blanketing the airwaves, and Sarah Palin had endorsed the Carly Fiorina -- but only NOM's May 19-21 outreach to 600,000 GOP primary voters can explain the dramatic, overnight reversal in the polls.

Only that! Nothing else -- certainly not Fiorina owning the airwaves while Campbell, running low on cash, went dark.

By David Weigel  |  June 9, 2010; 2:20 PM ET
Categories:  2010 Election , Gay  
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