Question Drafted for Maine Anti-Gay Marriage Referendum Petitions

Maine If opponents of marriage equality in Maine collect enough signatures, they will put a referendum on the ballot that Mainers will have the opportunity to vote on. Here is the question that will appear on petitions:

"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 Morning Sentinel reports: "The current threshold to force a so-called 'people's veto' is 55,087
certified signatures. Petitioners have until 90 days after the
Legislature adjourns to collect 55,087 signatures. The secretary of state then has 30 days to certify the signatures. If
the secretary of state rules that sufficient signatures have been
affixed on the instrument of petition, the stay continues until after
the voters decide on the question at a statewide election."

Hopefully, Mainers will have the sense to reject this referendum.

Comments

  1. Wes says

    With that kind of language, you’d have to be an absolute asshole to say “yes”.

    But of course you know many will.

  2. K says

    Ugh. I hope we don’t have to go through this again. Thankfully, the question includes information about how individuals & churches can refuse to perform them – the wording isn’t a blanket “Do you want to reject the new law that allows same sex couples to marry?”. I think that would have been a disaster. I hope Mainers will consider that exception to be enough.

  3. mac says

    who wrote that question…

    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?”

    how about you stop fixing the dice and simply ask…”Do you support same-sex marriage”…simple isn’t it when you don’t try to stack the deck…

  4. bobbyjoe says

    Unfortunately, I’m afraid many will read– and the anti-gay folks will encourage the misreading– of that question, with the simple change of “allow” instead of “allows.” Read that question if you take the “s” off the end of “allows;” it then sounds like you’re protecting the right of “individuals” and “religious groups” not to perform same-sex marriages. The anti-gay folks have never run an honest campaign in their lives, so I fully expect they’ll encourage this misreading to get the number of signatures they need.

  5. MT says

    Michael is right. If you read that question very quickly it sounds like they are trying to make a law that allows religious groups to decline performing same-sex marriages. If someone isn’t familiar with that fact that the current law already includes that, they could easily sign the petition thinking they are protecting the rights of religious people.

    I hope Mainers get a good PR blitz that makes it crystal clear what they are signing.

  6. K says

    OK, fine. Then the new campaign is, “Referendum ‘x’ already enables individuals and religious groups to refuse to perform same-sex marriages. GIven that exception, do you want to reject the new law that lets same-sex couples marry?” Equality Maine – make it crystal clear. Find out where the opponents are canvassing and meet them.

  7. Andy says

    Unfortunately, the threshold is low, so this will be on the ballot. Still, I have hope (having lived in Maine for about 4 years now) – I just want my husband (we were married in Massachusetts) to be my husband in Maine, too.