2012 Election | Gay Marriage | Maryland | News

Maryland's National Gay & Lesbian Task Force Action Fund Takes On Gambling


Two very different ballot issues, gambling and marriage equality, are finding their streams crossed in Maryland, where the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force Action Fund Maryland Political Action Committee has sent a mailer to pro-equality voters asking them to vote "no" on a proposed ballot measure that would expand gambling in the Old Line State. Voters there will decide this fall whether to keep or toss a law allowing same-sex marriage.

"We encourage anyone who supports Marriage Equality to contact their legislators and ask them to say 'no' to gaming… If the gaming bill is on the ballot, opponents are likely to spend millions identifying and turning out voters who don't like gambling ... and who also don't like Marriage Equality! So all the 'no' votes on gaming could also be 'no' votes for us," reads the mailer, obtained by Chris Geidner at BuzzFeed. "Numerous polls confirm this, and several bloggers and political pundits in Maryland have said the same thing."

But Jonathan Capehart at the Washington Post argues otherwise, writing recently, "The 'yes' vote for the gaming initiative is not only much bigger than the 'no' vote, it is more energized (with nearly double the strong support) and supports the marriage referendum by better than a 2-to-1 margin. Thus, fears that the gaming amendment will suppress support for the marriage referendum are unwarranted."

Though the national NGLTF wasn't directly responsible for this initiative, communications director Inga Sarda-Sorensen told Geidner that the NGLTF's Action Fund "believes an uncluttered ballot is the best ballot, and provides for the best chance for securing marriage equality in Maryland," which is why keeping the gambling initiative off November's ballot may be best for progress there.

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  1. This is crazy. Look at the casinos, they are full of old people. In general, old people are FOR gambling and AGAINST marriage equality.

    Posted by: tom a | Aug 9, 2012 11:53:28 AM

  2. Idiots. People who favour gambling tend to be more "live and let live" and certainly would support marriage equality.

    Once again, our "leaders" of the NGLTF have their heads so far up their @$$es that they'll manage to turn a probable victory for equality into a resounding defeat.

    It will be California all over again.

    Time to fire the buttheads of the NGLTF.

    Posted by: jamal49 | Aug 9, 2012 11:55:27 AM

  3. focus please!

    Posted by: Jed | Aug 9, 2012 12:03:09 PM

  4. I am not convinced that this represents a valid link or correlation between the supporters of marriage equality and supporters of gambling. It is a bit of a leap and I fear it mat backfire. Not a good approach IMHO.

    Posted by: Alex Parrish | Aug 9, 2012 12:05:01 PM

  5. Just. Stay. Focused. :-(

    Posted by: Michaelandfred | Aug 9, 2012 12:36:58 PM

  6. This is not a smart move. It divides the supporter base and diverts attention from the focus on marriage equality.

    Keep the eye on the prize and re-prioritize, NGLTF of Maryland.

    Posted by: FuryOfFirestorm | Aug 9, 2012 1:26:18 PM

  7. What a moronic thought process. Gays don't gamble? People who don't like gambling don't like gays?

    Who makes up these generalizations?

    Like everyone else I say, FOCUS!!!

    Posted by: jack | Aug 9, 2012 2:26:37 PM

  8. I really have a problem with this in that this is all really conjecture, whatever money they spent on these mailers could have just been sent to people on the fence about the marriage issue "more energized" about support. I never trust these mysterious polls people quote because it always seems like a bunch of smoke and mirrors. I'd rather see a group that is fighting for marriage equality wholeheartedly work toward their issue rather than try to play politics at the ballot initiative level- not just because I feel these decisions are on specious info at best, but also because I think it's not fair to screw with someone else's issue, in addition to making it seem like a specific group dumped a bunch of money into the fund to get the crossvote (shady)

    Posted by: MaddM@ | Aug 9, 2012 8:35:03 PM

  9. I have been a strong opponent of NGLTF ever since they actually blocked the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) from passage because they wanted to add in an irrelevant and extraneous demographic characteristic to ENDA. They blocked a ban on discrimination based on sexual orientation just so they could add language banning discrimination on the basis of gender identity. This post chronicles this debacle: http://citizenchris.typepad.com/citizenchris/2007/10/enda-gay-rights.html .

    Posted by: DB | Aug 10, 2012 11:39:11 AM

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    Posted by: alica | Sep 17, 2012 3:34:28 AM

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