Maine Voters Affirm Marriage
Special Report - November 4, 2009
The nationwide effort to legalize same-sex “marriage” received a huge blow yesterday, when voters in Maine voted to repeal a law that would have made the state the sixth in the nation to redefine marriage to include homosexual couples. In a November 3 referendum, Maine voters were asked on “Question 1”: “Do you want to reject the new law that lets same-sex couples marry and allows individuals and religious groups to refuse to perform these marriages?” The majority53 percentof Maine citizens voted “yes,” while 47 percent voted “no.” The vote represents a major victory for traditional marriage advocates in the politically liberal state, particularly since homosexual activists have been successful at redefining marriage in the neighboring New England states of Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Connecticut and Vermont.
Maggie Gallagher, president of the National Organization for Marriage and one of the leaders in the movement to protect the institution of marriage from redefinition, told the New York Times, that the vote in Maine “interrupts the story line that is being manufactured that suggests the culture has shifted on gay marriage and the fight is over.”
“Maine is one of the most secular states in the nation. It’s socially liberal. They had a three-year head start to build their organization, and they outspent us two to one,” Gallagher said. “If they can’t win there, it really does tell you the majority of Americans are not on board with this gay marriage thing.”
The historic vote makes Maine the 31st state in the nation to reject same-sex “marriage” in a vote by the people (30 other states have taken the issue of same-sex “marriage” to voters in the form of constitutional amendments that protect the definition of marriage as only between a man and a woman). In the five states where same-sex “marriage” is legal (Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, Connecticut, and Iowa), the redefinition of marriage has been achieved through the activist courts or the state legislatures. The November 3 vote on “Question 1” repeals LD 1020, a measure legalizing same-sex “marriage” that was enacted by the Maine legislature and signed into law by the governor this past spring, but was on hold pending the results of the “Question 1” referendum. More than 100,000 Maine citizens signed a petition earlier this year to put “Question 1” on the November ballot.
“Maine voters have proven that when the question of redefining marriage to include same-sex couples is taken directly to the peopleand not the activists courts or politiciansit is always rejected,” said Bill Brooks, president of the North Carolina Family Policy Council. “In fact, none of the five states that have legalized same-sex ‘marriage’ have done so through a vote of the people. The citizens of 30 states have voted to preserve the traditional definition of marriage in their state constitutions, and now Maine voters have preserved the institution of marriage in their state by repealing a bad law. Unfortunately, North Carolinians have not been given the chance to vote to protect marriage in our state, despite the introduction of legislation for the past six years that would allow them to do so, and despite polls that show overwhelming support for a Marriage Protection Amendment among North Carolinians.”
HB 361 and SB 272Defense of Marriage, which would give North Carolinians the opportunity to vote on a constitutional amendment preserving marriage as only between a man and a woman, were introduced as recently as the 20092010 legislative session. But the leadership of the General Assembly refused to allow either bill to be considered by a single committee. Because both bills would require a supermajority of both houses to enact them, these bills could still be passed in the upcoming 2010 session.
Brooks added, “The future of marriage in North Carolina should not be left in the hands of politicians or activist judges. It is time for North Carolinians to get the opportunity to vote on whether to preserve the definition of marriage in our state constitution.”
Copyright © 2009. North Carolina Family Policy Council. All rights reserved.