LGBT Advocates Poised For Historic Win in Maine

The Slatest
Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Oct. 1 2012 12:01 PM

Will Gay-Marriage Advocates' Long Ballot Losing Streak End in Maine?

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Coming soon to Maine?

Photo by David McNew/Getty Images.

Voters have gone to the polls more than 30 times since 1998 to have their say on statewide ballot measure on gay marriage. Advocates for same-sex marriage have lost every time. But that could very well change this year with the issue on November ballots in a small handful of liberal-leaning states.

One leading candidate to break that streak: Maine.

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According to a new poll from Pine Tree State polling outfit Critical Insights, Maine's ballot initiative to overturn the state's current ban on same-sex marriage is currently poised to pass this November. The poll suggests support that is almost too good to be true for gay-rights advocates: 57 percent in favor, 36 percent against, and 7 percent undecided, good for a 21-point lead with a little more than a month to go. Support is particularly strong among Democrats (81 percent), college grads (69 percent), and 18-to-34-years-old (77 percent).

Prior to this year's North Carolina referendum, Maine voters had been the last to hold a statewide vote on the issue, in 2009, when 53 percent of voters rejected the bid to allow gays and lesbians to walk down the aisle.

Gay-marriage initiatives are also on the ballots in Maryland, Minnesota, and Washington state this fall.

Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City. 

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