Maine Christian Group Threatens to Repeal Marriage Equality

Oh, just give up already.

MEWe are in conversations with the Alliance Defending Freedom, Family Research Council and Citizen Link to provide resources for churches, pastors and Christians who will need legal protections for our religious liberties. We want to discern the possible impact of redefining marriage as well as the remedies. Our priority is to help ensure your opportunity to live out your faith and ministry without interference.

We are exploring the possibility of returning to the ballot again to overturn this egregious new definition of marriage. That may mean another campaign, including a signature drive to get it back on another ballot.

(via good as you)


  1. Stefan says

    This is pathetic. No legitimate legal action exists for these idiots. The outcome is constitutional, and gay couples who get married will have no adverse effect on other marries couples or religious rights. The only religious “right” infringed on is the right to discriminate in the public sphere, which should have long ago been ruled unconstitutional. I hope they do try to bring lawsuits so that they continue to waste their limited resources and marginalize themselves.

  2. nn says

    Can they do that?

    I do not understand how it is legal to give a group of people their civil rights. Then take them back.
    This shows that it is particularly importantthe outcome of prop 8.
    It should not have been allowed. When people get such rightsit should be here to stay.

  3. says

    so they want it to be put to a vote. the vote happens. they lose.

    and they’re still complaining.

    Christ could be reborn on earth, say He loves and supports gay people and their marriages, and these people would say “I think you’re wrong, Jesus, we’re going to have to get a second opinion”

    how about y’all raise some money for the victims of Sandy, eh? or the homeless? the hungry? the kids suffering from starvation and malnutrition while your own family of gluttons binges on Chick-Fil-A?


  4. says

    First of all, they do have the legal right to do this. After all, we just did that to them; the ballot initiative we put up in Maine was a response to the 2012 ballot initiative that took marriage away. If we agree that civil rights should be put up to vote (I don’t), then we can’t say we approve of its legality only when we win.

    Second, though, I think this is nothing but bluster. They know that the demographics are against them NOW, and will only continue to move further against them in the two years before they can mount another ballot challenge. And in those two years, hundreds of same-sex couples will marry in Maine and some of those currently opposed will see that the sky has not fallen, their churches have not been sued and their pastors have not been put in jail, and their marriages go on just as before. This group is saying what their members want to hear, and they’re saying what they need to say in order to keep the money flowing in. But they know that spending money in 2014 for a ballot initiative that is certain to fail will be flushing their money down the drain.

  5. Paul says

    What do you mean, “can they do that?”
    But then you site Prop 8? That’s exactly what they did with Prop 8 which took away rights they had already been established.
    Their hate has no limit, unfortunately.

  6. ByTheBay says

    “Our priority is to help ensure your opportunity to live out your faith and ministry without interference.”

    That’s rich.

    My priority is to live out my life without interference from superstitious bigots.

  7. Kenneth says

    The first ballot initiative to change a state constitution to define a marriage as between one man and one woman to be put to the voters and fail was in Arizona, of all places, in 2006. Unfortunately, the wing-nuts reworded the issue and brought it back to the polls in 2008, where it passed. So, yes, it is perfectly legal to keep trotting the same tripe to the polls until you get the results you want, and no, they won’t let one defeat stop them. They’ll just find a way to word it differently and throw more money better spent elsewhere at it. All they need is enough signatures and enough cash.

  8. says

    They can try, and they will fail. The public will not want to revisit marriage at the ballot to take away civil rights they just approved. Not to mention the constitutional issues that would be raised if pigs fly and they succeeded. Like the Republican Party as a whole, they’re in denial, or simply want to keep cash flowing in from the dying zealots.

  9. JJ says

    @Paul, the appeals court overturned prop 8 on the theory that you can’t take away rights once they’re won. If the Supreme Court declines to hear the case then the rule the appeals court established will apply only to states in the 9th district, not to Maine. If the SCOTUS takes the case, then their ruling, whatever it is, will apply in Maine as well. That’s why the outcome of the prop 8 case is relevant here.

  10. Scott says

    So one strategy I am sure they are thinking of is to put it on the ballot in an off-cycle election year (like they did in 2009). That would at least boost the likelihood that their effort would win, but I still think the odds are against them. Mainers really don’t like antics like that.

  11. says

    This is of course the ultimate kick in the teeth for us when we are “given” our civil rights by the majority.

    These rights are unenumerated in the constitution but are inalienable nonetheless.
    We don’t need a majority suddenly feeling in a “giving” humour.
    The People need to be told that our rights to equality are just that; rights to equality……get used to it.

    OK, the Maine vote is a symbolic declaration of what we always had, but we don’t hold our right to civil marriage by virtue of some condescending noblesse oblige of the majority.
    We hold our rights to equality as stakeholders in our democracy…….no vote of a majority can strip us of our rights. And we will fight.

  12. LHN says

    I agree with Thom: Emrich is just saying what he thinks his followers want him to say. As for getting this issue back on the ballot again–I don’t think this crowd (Emrich, Conley, et al.) have the smarts, resources (both financial and human), or organization to pull it off.

    It’s very apparent to me that Frank Schubert was the mastermind behind Prop 8, Maine in 2009, and North Carolina in May 2012. NC may very well be his swan song. Schubert was effective when he was behind the scenes and pulling the strings–and nobody really knew who he was or what he was doing. Now that he’s been exposed, he’s lost the major strength that he’s brought to these past campaigns. Who’s going to hire him now? And bankroll him? He doesn’t come cheap.

    Without someone like Schubert to direct the effort, the local folks really don’t have a chance to run something this big. Personally, I think same-sex marriage is very safe in Maine. Legislators are certainly not going to repeal a law the people passed which would be the other option.

  13. Maguita says

    Someone needs to remind these “Christians” what Christ was all about:
    A man that flouted the religious laws of his time, saying that loving others is MORE IMPORTANT than adhering blindly to old laws.

    He was a courageous rebel, that fought against social inequities and injustices.

    And yet still, why do these blind twits fight against the relationship between CONSENTING ADULTS, but bluntly lend sanctuary for child rapists?

  14. Bruno says

    It’s actually kind of scary to think that they could come back in, say, 2014 or some other non-presidential election year and reverse this due to a different electoral demographic. And then we could come back in 2016 and vote it in again. This is why it should never be left to a vote…married couples could ping-pong in and out of a state of legality.

    That said, I don’t think they’d even win in 2013 or 2014 anyway.

  15. Bruno says

    @LHN: I’d argue that Frank Schubert had one strong, defining moment in his Wizard of Oz routine: the Gavin Newsom ad in California. It was a fairly genious stroke that he effected at the perfect time in the perfect way. If any advertisement changed the game in any of those states, that did. Otherwise, I think he just rode the coattails of hate until its inevitable demise on Tuesday. Sure, he could win again in a remaining red state like Indiana, but he and his hateful cohorts will never reverse progress, and they were always powerless to do so anyway.

  16. LHN says

    @Bruno, thanks for your comment and I agree about the Gavin Newsom ad. But, we were fooled in Maine in 2009 and led to believe that Marc Mutty was running the show. Schubert’s strength is/was being invisible but his own super-sized ego got the best of him on election night 2009 when he grabbed the microphone and announced victory for Question 1. That’s when it all started going downhill for him here in Maine. We weren’t fooled twice.

    As for 2014: I predict a huge turnout in that election because we have a *very* unpopular governor who has said he plans to run again. People will be turning out in droves to drive him from the Blaine House. 2016 is the next presidential election. That leaves 2015 for Emrich & Co. (if they were really to do something, which I don’t believe). By then, same-sex couples will have been happily marrying for almost 3 years and I think this issue will be a non-issue by that time.

  17. Tom in long beach says

    For the above group. It is very simple. Don’t believe in marriage equality, then just keep it to yourself. No one is going to force you to marry someone of the same sex, any more than someone is going to force Orthodox Jews to eat pork! You can preach/ believe whatever you want, you just don’t get to tell others how to live and vote. Just don’t expect to be able to work for or, get taxpayer’s money and be able to spew hate and ignorance! Don’t be in a business where you are supposed to service the public (unless you can hold your tounge).
    Or to keep it real simple, treat other people the way you want to be treated and you probably won’t get in trouble. Some guy said that once, you know the guy you claim to quote.

  18. Keith says

    The reality is that as long as things are allowed to be “put up for a vote” regarding civil rights, then it is probable that the LGBT community would always be at the mercy of the social tides of society. This is why the US Supreme Court must decisively rule on our full equality in US law and society, and settle this social issue of our time once and for all. Of course, since there is no legal or lawful rationale for denying us our equal rights, I trust that our legal system will ultimately protect us from future actions by such bigotted groups.

    Have a great weekend, everyone, and let’s celebrate and be happy for all the lucky couples in Maine, Maryland and Washington State. Mazaltov!

  19. Hawthorne says

    I need to shout this: HOW DOES MY MARRIAGE TO A MAN AFFECT YOUR MARRIAGE? Please tell me concretely how my marriage to a person of the same sex affects your marriage. Give me concrete examples how my marriage to someone of the same sex takes away any of your rights or privileges. If my marriage makes you uncomfortable, admit that and we can talk. But if you can’t say WHY my marriage to someone of the same sex makes you uncomfortable, then we can have no discussion. We live in a society of freedom of religion. That means that YOU can’t cram YOUR religion down MY throat. The laws of Maine, the laws of the US are CIVIL laws, they are NOT CHRISTIAN laws. Therefore, you can’t force your view on the entire populace of Maine or the US.

  20. Kerry says

    Unfortunately they have every right to revisit this issue. Maine has a People’s Veto. They would have to collect a certain number of signatures on a petition (at least 10% of the total vote
    for Governor cast in the last gubernatorial election) in order to get anything put on a ballot. Considering the outcome last Tuesday I can’t imagine they would win next time either.
    This law means they are already protected: “This chapter does not require any member of the clergy to perform or any church, religious denomination or other religious institution to host any marriage in violation of the religious beliefs of that member of the clergy, church, religious denomination or other religious institution. The refusal to perform or host a marriage under this subsection cannot be the basis for a lawsuit or liability and does not affect the tax-exempt status of the church, religious denomination or other religious institution.” So really, what’s their beef? Shouldn’t they be helping charities with money they raise instead of trying to squash loving relationships?

  21. Mary says

    I can’t imagine that leaders of the Christian Right would be crazy enough to try to get this issue on the ballot again in a liberal state like Maine. The people of Maine have already voted on this issue twice in 3 years. The public’s patience will wear thin. Social conservatives are starting to look like people who can’t face defeat. The “silent majority” has spoken in Maine. Why would another round of political bickering produce a different result? It’s not like different arguments will be used by either side on another attempt. The leaders of the Christian Right need to turn inward and reassess their relationship to the American people. At some level they really know this already.

  22. says

    Since I often point out how you’re wrong @Mary, this time I can say you have it exactly right. The reality is once marriage equality is in place, particularly in live and let live type states, all but the most zealous of the zealous pretty much forget about it. It quickly becomes a non-issue.

  23. LHN says

    @Kerry: Yes, we do have a People’s Veto but I think it’s important to realize what we have actually been voting on here in Maine in 2009 and 2012.

    2009: The Legislature passed a law allowing same-sex marriage, which was signed by the Governor. Before it could go into effect, opponents mounted a referendum campaign (People’s Veto), got the required number of signatures, and got the issue on the ballot. The law was repealed.

    2012: Proponents of same-sex marriage drafted legislation, which was approved, then they got enough signatures (which were approved) to put it on the ballot. This time we actually voted on the legislation (as opposed to repealing a law). Once the voter count is certified and the governor signs it (and I don’t believe he has any veto authority in this case–it is coming from the people), same-sex marriage will be the law. To get rid of it, it would need to be repealed by the legislature (never going to happen, the people voted for it) or through yet another repeal process (scenario of 2009) which I also doubt is going to happen. I think happy same sex couples will be getting married in Maine in January and for the long future after that…

  24. Ha! says

    Where will they get the money for this?

    Their base is made up of two groups:

    1) Billionaires who use social issues as red meat to build up support for tax breaks;

    2) Poor trailer trash who send their life savings in to the charlatans who run anti-gay groups.

    Group 1 wasted BILLIONS on this election with no return at all, and aren’t going to splash out billions more to fail again next time. And group #2 is bankrupt and facing long-term unemployment in the knowledge economy, so they lack the resources.

    Game over.

  25. Bill says

    Regarding pdxblueyes’s comment about “insanity”, if they try again, they would undoubtedly use different campaign tactics. The real problem they’ll face is that, after a year or two of same-sex marriages with absolutely no ill effects on the state’s straight population, the FUD (Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt) campaigns they’ve used previously, and any new variation of that, are less likely to work. If they try, “think of the children,” they’ll have to explain why nothing bad has happened to the children after same-sex marriage became legal. A FUD campaign doesn’t work well when everyone has plenty of data to the contrary.

  26. Bernie says

    I cannot stop laughing at this article. This is such an act of desperation and stupdity. The idea that their religious liberties are in jeaopardy make absolutely no sense. If you don’t like marriage equality, no one is forcing you to accept it or participate in it. Basically, if you minded your own business and not worry what GLBT people are doing in the privacy of their bedroom, there would not be an issue.

  27. chuck says

    Could they raise and spend a few more hundred million dollars in Maine? I am sure that the TV and radio stations up would appreciate the extra cash. Maybe they could do a similar campaign every year for a couple of decades.
    Maybe they could replace lobster as a money maker.

  28. jamal49 says

    Interestingly, I followed the link to this group’s website. There was an interesting article by Russell D. Moore (don’t know him from Adam) that called for civility and respect towards our newly re-elected President.

    Regardless, I think those people will try again. And again. And again. If not in Maine, then elsewhere. Like the GOP that they support, those “christian” bigots will not accept that the tide has turned in their disfavor.

    Maybe it’s time for the religious right to realize that they are actually the religious wrong. If I were a religious person, I’d suggest to the teavangelicals that God ordained that Tuesday’s elections result in Mr. Obama’s reelection and marriage equality in four states.

    God got tired of idiots acting as if.

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