A co-founder of OkCupid, the matchmaking website that helped topple a tech CEO for a political donation against gay marriage, has apologized for his own contributions to an anti-gay marriage congressman.
As The Daily Caller News Foundation first reported last week, co-founder Sam Yagan donated $500 in 2004 to Utah Republican Rep. Chris Cannon. Yagan is currently CEO of the dating website’s controlling company
Cannon supported a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage.
Yagan, who cheered Mozilla’s decision to force Eich to resign as CEO last week, issued an apologetic statement to the Huffington Post on Tuesday.
“A decade ago, I made a contribution to Representative Chris Cannon because he was the ranking Republican on the House subcommittee that oversaw the Internet and intellectual property, matters important to my business and our industry,” said Yagan, who was president of the tech company Metamachine when he donated to Cannon.
“I accept responsibility for not knowing where he stood on gay rights in particular; I unequivocally support marriage equality and I would not make that contribution again today.” (RELATED: Mozilla CEO out over opposition to gay marriage)
Yagan did not respond to TheDCNF’s request for comment last week when the contribution to Cannon was first discovered. But the discovery generated new interest when it was circulated Monday by Mother Jones, a liberal magazine.
OkCupid and many gay marriage advocates targeted Mozilla after it hired Brendan Eich as CEO last month. In 2008, Eich had donated $1,000 in support of California’s Prop 8, a ballot initiative against gay marriage.
Protesting the move, OkCupid created a message seen by visitors using a Mozilla product, the Firefox web browser, informing them of Eich’s donation. The dating site also suggested that Firefox users change browsers.
After Eich’s ouster, many conservatives responded with a boycott of their own. A Twitter campaign with the hashtag #UninstallFirefox trended on the social media site. Mozilla also registered its highest level of negative feedback in its history the day after Eich’s removal.
Yagan also donated campaign dollars to President Barack Obama when he was still opposed to legalized gay marriage. In his statement, the matchmaking maven drew a line between his donation to Cannon and Eich’s support for Prop 8. (RELATED: Mozilla registers swell of negative feedback following Eich ouster)
“However, a contribution made to a candidate with views on hundreds of issues has no equivalence to a contribution supporting Prop 8, a single issue that has no purpose other than to affirmatively prohibit gay marriage, which I believe is a basic civil right,” he said.
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