By KCPQ, CNN
Seattle, WA (KCPQ) — Jeff Bezos, CEO of Seattle-based Amazon.com, and his wife MacKenzie, have donated an unprecedented $2.5 million in support of legalizing gay marriage in Washington State.
The donation, announced Friday, is believed to be one of the largest single financial backings of gay marriage
The campaign to pass Referendum 74, Washington United for Marriage (WUM), confirmed the donation and said it accounts for nearly half of the more than $5 million it has raised to date.
“I am thrilled by Jeff and MacKenzie’s staggeringly generous donation.” WUM’s volunteer finance co-chair Jennifer Cast said. “Their support of our efforts to approve R74 comes at an important time and will have great impact. I am deeply grateful to both of them as this donation is going to help us make history.”
In February, Washington became the seventh state in the country to pass legislation legalizing same-sex marriage. That law was blocked when opponents submitted thousands of signatures — forcing a public vote in November.
If voters approve R-74, the law passed earlier this year would be upheld and marriage laws in Washington would not take into account the gender of the couple.
The language of the bill reads: “This bill allows same-sex couples to marry, applies marriage laws without regard to gender, and specifies that laws using gender-specific terms like husband and wife include same-sex spouses. After 2014, existing domestic partnerships are converted to marriages, except for seniors. It preserves the right of clergy or religious organizations to refuse to perform or recognize any marriage or accommodate wedding ceremonies. The bill does not affect licensing of religious organizations providing adoption, foster-care, or child-placement.