Predictions on How States Could Vote on Same-Sex Marriage
While we've already provided the Ultimate LGBT Guide to Election Day, but it didn't really predict what might happen in the four states considering same-sex marriage initiatives so we're going to do that here.
Maine, Maryland, Minnesota and Washington all have marriage on their ballots, but they're not all the same: while Minnesota will decide whether to criminalize same-sex marriage in their state constitution, the other three will vote on whether to legalize same-sex marriage — that's right... not "civil unions" but marriage.
Maine and Maryland's ballots also explicitly contain "religious exemption" clauses excluding churches from having recognizing same-sex couples.
If any state votes in favor of marriage equality, they will be the first electorate in in U.S. history to do so. But how will all this play out? The LGBT news blog Towleroad provided a good overview of each state's polling data regarding same-sex marriage, and we've summarized it into a super-short version below:
MAINE - While polls of likely voters predicted a win for same-sex marriage by a 52 percent margin, the fact that undecided voters tend to vote anti-gay could raise the percentage of anti-gay votes to a very close 48 percent. Maine polls close at 10pm EST.
MARYLAND - Polling indicates that 55 percent of voters supportive of same-sex marriage and 39 percent oppose it, making this state one of the likeliest to approve marriage equality. Maryland polls close at 8pm EST.
MINNESOTA - Young, Democratic and independent voters overwhelmingly oppose a constitutional amendment criminalizing same-sex marriage while senior citizens and Republican voters largely support it. Polls suggest that the amendment will fail by a 52 to 45 percent margin. Minnesota polls close at 8pm CST.
WASHINGTON - This state votes entirely by mail (darned hippies!), but right now polls have marriage equality passing with 49 percent supporting it and 45 percent opposing it. Since the remaining six percent of undecided voters tend to oppose such measures, this race will remain super-close until the state tallies up all the votes. Washington ballots must be post-marked by today.
Though the LGBT marriage organization Freedom to Marry will be live-blogging the results all day, our prediction is that marriage will pass in Maryland and the Minnesota amendment will die while the other two are up for grabs.
If we're right, you owe us a Coke.