SEATTLE, WASHINGTON – Last week, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and his wife, MacKenzie, donated $2.5 million to the campaign to legalize same-sex marriage in Washington State—a contribution that effectively doubles the electoral war chest of gay marriage supporters. Washington is one of four states where same-sex marriage referendums will be on the ballot this year.
In February, Washington State lawmakers legalized same-sex marriage, a move pushed by Gov. Christine Gregoire, a Democrat. But opponents collected enough signatures to add a ballot measure that would repeal the law. Although most Americans say they support marriage equality, voters in 32 states have rejected such measures at the ballot box.
Bezos, who founded Seattle-based Amazon.com in 1994, is among top Washington State business leaders who have donated in support of the same-sex referendum, including Bill Gates and Steven A. Ballmer of Microsoft, who have each given $100,000.