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BEAVERTON, Ore Nike Inc. announced Tuesday that it fully supports an initiative to legalize gay marriage in Oregon.

The Freedom to Marry and Religious Protection Initiative
is a proposed amendment to the Oregon constitution that would allow for same-sex marriage headed to the Nov. 2014 ballot.

For Oregon businesses to attract and retain the best talent, we need fair and equitable laws that treat all Oregonians equally and prevent discrimination, the company said in a statement.

The company created a new political action committee, The Nike Equality PAC, which has $280,000 in startup cash, to backup its endorsement. The company stated contributions came from Nike Inc. and $180,000 committed from Nike leaders.

Nike, one of Oregon s two Fortune 500 companies, supported the 2012 ballot initiative that legalized gay marriage in Washington State.

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