Voters in Maine and Maryland vote for marriage equality

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Gay rights supporters in Minnesota earlier in the year protesting against the vote by the Minnesota House to put marriage to the popular vote.
Image: Fibonacci Blue.

In Maine and Maryland, voters have approved ballot measures yesterday to allow marriage between same-sex partners. Votes for a similar measure in Washington are still being counted. Reports from Minnesota suggest a ballot measure that would amend the constitution to ban gay marriage has been rejected by voters.

In Maryland, voters supported the law passed earlier this year by Democratic Governor Martin O'Malley 52% to 48%. Josh Levin from Marylanders for Marriage Equality said that voters would "feel the ripples of this monumental victory across the country for years to come."

Supporters of marriage equality in Maine stated they had 250,000 one-on-one conversations with voters. Matt McTighe from Mainers United for Marriage celebrated the passage of the Maine ballot initiative saying: "A lot of families in Maine just became more stable and secure."

Chad Griffin from the gay rights group the Human Rights Campaign said: "When the history books are written, 2012 will be remembered as the year when LGBT Americans won decisively at the ballot box."

Frank Schubert, an opponent of gay marriage, downplayed the results. "The fact that an uber-liberal state like Maine or Washington might go for same sex marriage, it doesn't mean that the country has changed."

Six other states — Vermont, New York, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Iowa, Massachusetts — as well as the District of Columbia already recognise same-sex marriage. In May, Barack Obama announced that he supports legalisation of same-sex marriage.