Everyone knows that the Mormon church raised millions of dollars to try to defeat Proposition 8--gay marriage--in California. Under the radar, they apparently also supplied phone banks and hundreds of volunteers, which, in violation of California law, they may have failed to report. NY Times:
The complaint, filed by Fred Karger, founder of the group Californians Against Hate, asserted that the church’s reported contributions — about $5,000, according to state election filings — vastly underestimated its actual efforts in passing Proposition 8, which amended the state’s Constitution to recognize only male-female marriage.
Broadly speaking, California state law requires disclosure of any money spent or services provided to influence the outcome of an election.
Rick Hertzberg of the New Yorker provides some perspective:
The original Latter-day Saint, Joseph Smith, acquired at least twenty-eight and perhaps sixty wives, some of them in their early teens, before he was lynched, in 1844, at age thirty-eight. Brigham Young, Smith’s immediate successor, was a bridegroom twenty times over, and his successors, along with much of the male Mormon élite, kept up the mass marrying until the nineteen-thirties—decades after the Church had officially disavowed polygamy, the price of Utah’s admission to the Union, in 1896.