by Annie Linskey
6:14 AM EDT, August 27, 2012
Sarah Jessica Parker, Susan Sarandon and former first daughter Barbara Bush are among an extremely long list of celebrities set to appear at a fundraiser for Maryland's same-sex marriage law.
The event will be atop the James Hotel in New York City in mid-September. Tickets start at $250.
The Free State is one of four where same-sex marriage is on the ballot this year. No state has ever upheld gay nuptials at the ballot box, however polling (funded by a gay rights group) shows Marylanders are open to the idea.
The state will have an unusually crowded ballot this year -- same-sex marriage is one of four controversial laws that voters will decide. Others include expanding gambling, allowing some illegal immigrants to have in-state tuition and the congressional map. And, because of that, the state is bracing for an onslaught of fundraising, national attention and -- of course -- television ads.
Gov. Martin O'Malley, a Democrat eying the White House in 2016, is focusing his energy on same-sex marriage and the in-state tuition questions. (He's said he's "so sick" of the gambling issue.) He will appear at the fundraiser.
The invite also includes Edward Norton, Julianne Moore, John Waters, Josh Charles, Russell Simmons. Plus the roster includes: fashion designer Thom Browne, Bravo exec Andy Cohen, Gramercy Tavern founder Tom Colicchio, Good Wife star Julianna Margulies, actress Catherine Keener and swimsuit model Hilary Rhoda.
And, there are a host of important behind the scenes types, including former Republican National Committee chairman Ken Mehlman – who made calls to wavering Maryland delegates during the same-sex marriage debate in the General Assembly.
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