Friday, January 27, 2012

MAINE: Back To The Ballot For Marriage Equality

As expected, Equality Maine announced today that they have decided to place a measure on the November 2012 ballot which would enact marriage equality. This is a big deal, because in 2009 after an expensive Proposition 8-inspired campaign in which both sides spent over $9 million combined, Maine voters rejected a marriage equality measure enacted by the state legislature by voting down Question 1 53% to 47%.

From the press release:
Augusta – Today, advocates for allowing same-sex couples to legally marry in Maine announced plans for a Citizens Initiative to enact a marriage equality law, delivering more than 105,000 signatures from Maine voters who want the issue on the November 2012 ballot to the Secretary of State’s office.
The announcement follows two years of outreach and conversations with Mainers about the freedom to marry, statewide polling showing steadily increasing support for allowing same-sex couples to marry – which now stands at 54 percent – and intensive field organizing in preparation for the campaign.
“The number of signatures we gathered and the thoughtful conversations we’ve been having with voters tell us that Mainers are eager to speak on this question again,” said Betsy Smith, executive director of EqualityMaine. “Our polling shows a 54% majority of support for same-sex marriage in Maine. Many Mainers have changed their minds and want a chance to bring equality and fairness to our state.”
So Maine is one of the states where advocates for marriage equality will be playing offense in the fight to end the exclusion of same-sex couples from civil marriage. Others are Maryland, Washington and New Jersey.

There will be anti-equality efforts in North Carolina and Minnesota.

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