Campaign Board Boots Catholic DVD Complaint
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota’s Campaign Finance Board dismissed a complaint against the Archdiocese of St. Paul-Minneapolis and Archbishop John Nienstedt over the distribution last year of a DVD critical of same-sex marriage.
The board opinion released Friday dismissed arguments that the Archdiocese was required to register as a political fund; that Nienstedt should have registered as a lobbyist; and that the DVD and an accompanying letter were meant to influence legislative action.
The state’s six Catholic dioceses distributed the DVD featuring Nienstedt in September 2010. He called for a constitutional amendment in Minnesota limiting marriage to heterosexual couples only. In May, state lawmakers forwarded that issue to the 2012 ballot.
The board says the matter was not yet directly before state lawmakers or voters when the DVD went out, and therefore didn’t trigger political fund or lobbyist registration requirements.