The Corner

In Maine, High Stakes for Traditional Marriage

In the history books, the fate of traditional marriage in America might come down to the weather in Maine.

The final polling shows the Maine referendum on marriage to be in a statistical dead heat, with a slight tick in favor of marriage supporters.

With the margin of error so small, factors such as weather play a bigger role.

Public Policy Polling claims that “senior citizens support [marriage] by a 59–40 margin while voters under 30 oppose it 51–48.” So if cold weather and occasional showers keep seniors away from the polls throughout the day, marriage in Maine could be in trouble.

For proponents of same-sex marriage, Maine represents one of their last opportunities to claim that more American citizens support redefining marriage at the polls. After all, there are only a few states that have not yet had referendums on the question, and in every state that has put the question to a vote of the people, traditional marriage has won.

If Maine confirms same-sex marriage, however, we can expect a fast rewriting of the story. “Valiant fighters for marriage equality,” it will be said by the usual newspapers and news anchors, “disappointed but not defeated by their loss in California’s Proposition 8, brought their cause of justice to the opposite shore, and there turned the tide.”

. . . which is why I hope everyone in Maine who supports traditional marriage decided to dress warmly and wear rain boots this morning.

– Thomas Peters is the communications director for the American Principles Project, where he also blogs.