The American Civil Liberties Union, which supports marital rights for gays and lesbians, is siding with opponents of same-sex marriage who are challenging a judge's order to turn over campaign documents from last year's effort to pass Proposition 8 ... The ACLU's Northern California chapter, which supports [plaintiffs in Perry v. Schwarzenneger], nevertheless filed arguments with the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals saying the court-ordered disclosure could endanger people's freedom to speak freely while planning political campaigns.ACLU's amicus letter brief for review and filed motion to become amicus curiae, filed 11/27/09 in Perry v. Hollingsworth, No. 09-17241 (9th Cir.)
What Plaintiffs want are Proponents’ internal strategy documents—private e-mails from those who were central to the campaign, strategy plans, and “brainstorming” sessions with campaign consultants and pollsters about arguments that should and should not be advanced ...But that is all core First Amendment information ... The people charged with running those campaigns cannot do so effectively while fearing that every proposal they float, every crazy idea they shoot down, every campaign plan that ultimately is not implemented will become fodder for discovery by their campaign opponents in the event of subsequent litigation, not to mention a blueprint for those opponents to use in future electoral battles. A rule that would open internal campaign communications to compelled disclosure upon a simple showing of ordinary litigation relevance would not breathe fresh air into the electoral process so much as flatten it like a house of straw.