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Monday, February 7, 2011

Marriage Equality: The Most Epic Battle Since Proposition 8?

By David Mixner -

The marriage equality battle in Maryland could be the most epic since Proposition 8 in California. Equality Maryland is leading the fight and we are within four votes of passing the legislation out of the Senate. Yet even if it successfully passed by the legislature and signed by the governor, we would most likely face a referendum in the next election. To take this issue to the voters in the Chesapeake Bay State would require the valid signatures of 53,650 of the state's citizens. That is not a huge amount and likely would be gathered quickly by opponents of marriage equality.

That would set the stage for the most public and visible battle around marriage equality since Proposition 8.
There has been good news coming out of the state recently with the latest poll figures showing 51% for marriage and 44% opposed to full equality. That leaves just 5% undecided. In addition, Lt. Governor Anthony Brown has announced his support. This young bright legislator is pivotal since he is powerful in crucial Prince George's county. Joining the lieutenant governor in support is Republican State Senator Allan H. Kittleman which created a stir among political decision makers and the media in the state.
There is no question that President Obama's early and strong support would be absolutely critical in the vote. His leadership could have a decisive impact in vote rich-places like Baltimore and Prince George's County.
While Equality Maryland is leading the efforts, national organizations are increasingly putting resources into the state. The newly formed has made Maryland their first target state. Working with the state organization they have started a web campaign called "Pop the Question" where it is asking the LGBT community in Maryland to find ten straight friends to assist in the campaign. HRC has seven full time field staff working with Equality Maryland and organizing hard among labor unions. In addition, they have put representatives on college campuses. Freedom to Marry is also heavily involved in the battle with icon Evan Wolfson leading the way.
Don't wait to the last minute. Make a donation to Maryland Equality today to assist in the battle. Just click here.

for more from David visit Live from Hell's Kitchen.


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