I spoke to Jody Hall, the owner of Capitol Hill's Cupcake Royale, about the pro-gay marriage political committee she registered with the state.
It turns out that Hall, who is gay, doesn't have any big campaign plans in the works—other than selling cupcakes.
Following up on her success raising money for the "It Gets Better" campaign, Stranger editor Dan Savage's viral video campaign against anti-gay bullying, (Hall raised $10,000 by donating some of the proceeds from a cupcake called "The Gay," above), Hall then started donating some of the proceeds to the pro-gay marriage campaign, Washington United for Marriage. [pullquote]When the Public Disclosure Commission heard about Jody Hall's fundraising—she brought in $7,000 in June—she was told she had to register as a PAC[/pullquote].
Washington voters are voting in November on Referendum 74, a referendum to approve or disapprove of the gay marriage legislation passed by the legislature in February.
Cupcakes at Hall's six shops usually cost $3.50, but she sells "The Gay" for $4.00, and had been setting aside $1 for R-74. She ended up raising $7,000 in June. When the Public Disclosure Commission heard about Hall's fundraising, they told her she had to register as a PAC. (Companies can make direct donations to campaigns—unlimited ones, in fact—but when they start doing their own fundraising campaigns without, say, remit envelopes from the official campaign or oversight from the official campaign, they turn into a political committee themselves, and must register.)
Hall hadn't planned to continue selling "The Gay," which isn't on the current menu, but says she's "been getting a lot of requests to bring it back."
She made "Obama" cupcakes for Joe Biden's visit (featuring the red, white, and blue Obama logo), and has been asked to start selling those to raise money for the Democrats.
No decision there, but the lefty entrepreneur—she was big supporter of the city's paid sick leave ordinance—says, "I'd sure like to stop the obstruction in Washington to continue Obama's progressive policies."