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Opinion: Jeff Kent opens his checkbook and takes a stand against gay marriage

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Jeff Kent, who played second base for the Los Angeles Dodgers this season, has stepped into the emotional world of same-sex marriage, giving $15,000 to backers of the California proposition on Tuesday’s ballot that would ban it.

In a disclosure filed with the California secretary of state, Kent listed his occupation as professional baseball player for the Dodgers and his address as Austin, Texas. He gave the $15,000 in a transaction dated Monday but which only now is public.

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Proposition 8 would ban same-sex marriage by imposing a California constitutional amendment that would define marriage as being between one man and one woman.

With both sides spending upward of $30 million each, the measure has become the most costly ballot measure ever dealing with a social issue, and the spending is by far the most for any proposition anywhere in the country this year.

Kent, a free agent who is considering retiring, is a potential Hall of Famer who is best known for his years with the San Francisco Giants. A Bellflower native, Kent also played baseball at University of California, Berkeley.

A review of campaign records shows no other donations to federal or California state campaigns by Kent.

Frank Schubert, managing the Yes-on-8 campaign, said he was unaware that Kent had weighed in.

‘He has had a stellar career and will no doubt one day be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame,’ Schubert said. ‘I wish the Giants had kept Kent and traded [Barry] Bonds.’

--Dan Morain


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