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Prop. 8 backers push for yardage

But an effort to put placards in a million lawns simultaneously is delayed by a production glitch.

October 03, 2008|Jessica Garrison | Times Staff Writer

It was supposed to be the largest mass lawn-sign planting in the history of California politics: A million signs in a million yards across the state, all stuck into the ground at the same moment in a show of support for Proposition 8.

Except it never happened.

It seems that the signs, some of them outsourced overseas, didn't all arrive in time for the September event. And many still haven't reached supporters of the measure that would amend the state Constitution to ban gay marriage.

"It takes longer to get a million than we thought," said Sonja Eddings Brown, deputy communications director for the Protect Marriage coalition.

Brown said the campaign purchased its signs from COGS Signs, a Northern California company she described as California's "largest manufacturer . . . of political tools." Representatives from COGS did not respond to calls or e-mails requesting comment.

Brown tried to put a positive spin on the production glitch -- a sign, so to speak, of the overwhelming demand for lawn signs by voters who wanted to participate in "the most unprecedented and largest grass-roots effort ever attempted in California."

Some supporters of Proposition 8 who were planning to participate in the sign planting were unaware of the glitch. One said, though, that he was wondering what had happened to his sign.

"We're still waiting for them to arrive," said Sione Tuiasoa, 48, a Mormon truck driver from Hawthorne. He added facetiously that he had been wondering whether opponents of the proposition played a role in the delay.

Opponents of Proposition 8 said they had nothing to do with the sign snafu, but they were nevertheless amused by it.

Ali Bay, spokeswoman for Equality California, which is coordinating the No on 8 campaign, said that her side has so far distributed about 60,000 lawn signs, all purchased "from a union shop in Kansas."

She had a hard time not sounding pleased. "All our materials were made in the U.S," she said.

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jessica.garrison@latimes.com

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