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ME results

Results here. TABOR went down to defeat; Yay! Now ME won't slide into the Atlantic, like CA into the Pacific, by subjecting every tax to a referendum. And medical marijuana is legalized; Yay! And the state actually rejected cutting the excise tax on automobiles. That's really three black eyes for the right. (The other question was about rolling back an undemocratic and painful school consolidation program imposed by the governor; voters, I think, decided that it would be even more painful to undo what had been done.)

And that leaves question 1, the referendum to repeat the bill to legalize gay marriage. Ironically, Governor Baldacci, a Democrat, who signed the bill, has been the compleat weasel in almost every other respect (a lot like Blagojevich, who did this one great thing on the death penalty, and otherwise was a rotting pustule of corruption). Based on my conversations in the local coffee shop and calls, I would have expected it to pass by roughly the same margin as the other questions did: 60/40, 55/45. The anti-gay have marginalized themselves as blowhards, and nobody likes that. Wrongly, I was relaxed about this.

I'm guessing that the difficulty with question 1 is that (a) it's identified with Baldacci, and there's no other way to send Baldacci a message this year, and (b) the No on 1 forces ran a smart campaign where they claimed the bill would force gay marriage to be taught in the schools, when a schools question was also on the ballot.

I don't think a failure on 1 says much about the state's innate conservativism, since the conservatives got stomped on every other issue of importance to them. I do think the failure says a lot about the ability of activists parachuted in from away to influence events in a geographically large state with a small and tightly knit population -- at least in the absence of a charismatic candidate combined with the highly game-able caucus system. And of course, if Obama had campaigned for Question 1 the same way he campaigned for a Goldman CEO, or made a TV ad, or even sent a proxy, no problemo! Plenty of gay marriages are happening in churches, even with old and conservative congregations; I'd say let that play out -- though access bloggers probably won't be able to leave well enough alone (and then there's the business model).

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Sarah's picture
Submitted by Sarah on

Because the result in the marriage equality race was a major plus for the Right.

Ignoring that is not the same as fighting back against it.

The Mormons poured money into this. The Catholics poured money into this. This was a huge, huge win for them -- akin to Prop 8 in CA last year, if not bigger, because Maine had a law that would make marriage equally available to all the people in the state.

gqmartinez's picture
Submitted by gqmartinez on

Its frustrating when people hardly bother to respect your time by spending 30 seconds reading your entire post. Must be why it all seems like a cacophony.

gqmartinez's picture
Submitted by gqmartinez on

Washington had two state measures that were as important but almost completely overlooked. First, there was a TABOR like initiative (1033) pushed by the same old, same old people. That went down pretty handily.

The other was a domestic partnership expansion, Referendum 71. While not as sexy as a marriage law, its still a vote for a basic level of justice for all.

Seattle had a housing levy as well which I cannot find information for right now. This would provide funding for a rather successful low income housing program. Not being a Seattle-proper resident, I didn't get to vote on this one.

gqmartinez's picture
Submitted by gqmartinez on

Funding for the housing levy was tied to prop 1, a transportation initiative, which passed about two to one.