02/16/2011 01:17 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

PolitiFact: National Organization for Marriage Makes Misleading Claim About Gay Marriage

The Pulitzer Prize winning site PolitiFact recently called out the National Organization for Marriage for pushing a misleading statement.

And it's a huge lie -- one that is central to the organization's argument against same-sex marriage.

According to PolitiFact, NOM mailed brochures throughout Rhode Island talking about the so-called consequences of the state approving gay marriage:

Recently, a leading opponent, the National Organization for Marriage, mailed brochures throughout the state that included the headline: "Imposing same-sex marriage has consequences." The brochure listed four "real consequences" of "redefining marriage to a genderless institution."

We chose to examine one of the claims: "Massachusetts' public schools teach kids as young as kindergartners about gay marriage. Parents have no legal right to object!"

During the investigation of this claim, PolitiFact talked to:

  • Christopher C. Plante, executive director of the Rhode Island Chapter of NOM,
  • Kris Mineau, executive director of the Massachusetts Family Institute,
  • Jonathan Considine of the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education,
  • the Massachusetts Comprehensive Health Curriculum,
  • the Massachusetts Teachers Association, and
  • Thomas Gosnell, president of the American Federation of Teachers Massachusetts.

PolitiFact concluded that NOM's claim was inaccurate:

Bottom line: The National Organization for Marriage mailing says that Massachusetts public schools teach kindergartners about gay marriage. The wording, including the present tense verb, gives the impression this is happening now, in many schools.

But the group's only evidence is two incidents five years ago. It's possible that somewhere, in one of the 351 cities and towns in Massachusetts, other kindergartners have been taught about same-sex marriage. But NOM couldn't cite any other examples. We find its statement False.

PolitiFact is the same site which called out Sarah Palin for her "death panel" claim and also the Republican party for claiming that the Obama Administration was pushing a "government takeover of health care."

Both of these claims received the PolitiFact Lie of the Year for 2009 and 2010, respectively.

A very thorough explanation of how PolitiFact investigated NOM's claim is here.