UPDATE: Tinder and Match end donations to Republican Attorneys General
On June 27, Popular Information reported that Match Group, which operates Match, Tinder, Hinge, OK Cupid, and other popular dating sites, had donated $137,000 to the Republican Attorneys General Association (RAGA). RAGA played a central role in Dobbs. Mississippi Attorney General Lynn Fitch (R), a member of RAGA, was in charge of the legal strategy to eliminate the constitutional right to an abortion.
In a recent fundraising email, RAGA pledged that donations would be used to further undermine abortion rights across the country. "These battles to protect the unborn will now take place at the state level, where the courageous conservative leadership of Republican Attorneys General has never been more critical," the email said. "Every donation will help Republican Attorneys General combat the Democrats' pro-abortion agenda and stand tall for life."
In Wisconsin, for example, there is a statute banning abortion, enacted in 1849, that has been unenforceable since Roe. Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul (D) has said he will "not investigate or prosecute anyone for having an abortion" based on the archaic state law. RAGA, however, has already reserved $682,250 in TV ad time for spots opposing Kaul. RAGA is supporting Eric Toney, who has pledged to enforce the abortion ban if elected.
Meanwhile, Match Group has held itself out as a supporter of abortion rights. After Texas enacted a ban on nearly all abortions last year, then-CEO Shar Dubey established a fund to cover expenses for employees who need to travel for an abortion. "[T]his particular law is so regressive to the cause of women’s rights that I felt compelled to speak publicly," Dubey said.
Match Group did not respond to Popular Information's request for comment.
Popular Information’s report quickly generated extensive coverage in The Guardian, Vox, and the New York Times, (twice). We then partnered with More Perfect Union to produce a video version:
Now, Match Group says it will stop donating to RAGA (and its Democratic equivalent). CEO Bernard Kim, who took over for Dubey on June 1, says he only learned of Match's donation to RAGA after Popular Information's report:
I learned about the donations to RAGA the same way most of you did, when I saw it in the media. It’s my responsibility to understand how these donations fit into our larger lobbying activity, and determine what we will do moving forward.
The company "also promised to fight legal requests or subpoenas for any employee or user data related to abortion."
Judd, It must be nice to see evidence of how much your reporting matters. Controlling where money goes and getting rid of the deadly dangerous rhetoric put out by MAGAs should be our primary focus.
You’re the real thing, Judd, and you’re making a positive, substantive difference. Please don’t stop.