Attention for Question 6 Voters Heats Up

Marriage Equality Question 6 Media buys this week will intensify the marriage debate.


Marriage Equality represented by Question 6 is one of the hot ballot issues this year. A lot of organizing energy has been spent on this ballot question which will ask you to vote “for” if you want to protect the Civil Marriage Protection Act which was signed by the Governor in March, earlier this year. A vote “against” will deny fairness and equality to gay and lesbian couples and their families.

Two major marriage organizations are at work in Maryland. The Maryland Marriage Alliance (MMA) is organizing voters who wish to keep the marriage law the same as it was before the law was passed by the majority in both houses of the Maryland General Assembly. The other group, Marylanders for Marriage Equality (MFME) is supporting a “for” vote which promotes fairness and equality for all Maryland families.

Marylanders for Marriage Equality has been on the ground talking to people face to face, collecting pledge of support signatures since March when the bill was signed. The Alliance then worked to collect signatures of those who wish to bring this civil rights issue to a vote. Delegate Neal Parrot’s group  was successful getting the marriage question on the ballot. Marylanders for Marriage Equality points out that support for Question 6 is and has been growing. This is growth is documented by polling data. Opponents, however, point out that of all the 30 states bringing this question to a vote, none supporting marriage equality have ever been successful.

Growth of support for Marriage Equality has been growing in recent months.  There was an uptick in support just after the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. And there was another uptick just after President Obama came out in support for marriage equality in May of this year.  Maryland is very likely to be the first state to pass such a bill by referendum vote. Three other states, Washington, Maine and Minnesota will also have marriage measures on the November 6th ballot.

This vote may very well come down to who has the economic muscle in Baltimore-Washington Metro Area media blitz in the coming weeks. Both organizations are gearing for this new phase of the campaign. It appears that the Maryland Marriage Alliance is nervous. With a large media buy last week their intention to get their message out to voters is clear. Marylanders for Marriage Equality encouraged their supporters, this week, to get ready for the onslaught of negative messages. It seems that National Organization for Marriage (NOM) has used the same methods in all of their previous campaigns. MFME expects the same routine methods from the opposition.

With just about seven weeks until Election Day. Unregistered voters are reminded that they must register and have their application to the Maryland State Board of Elections by Tuesday, October 30, 2012. Your request must be received by 8:00 pm if you mail or deliver the application or 11:59 pm if you fax or email it. In order to beat the last minute rush, do it today: https://voterservices.elections.state.md.us/OnlineVoterRegistration

If you will not be available to vote in person your vote still matters. You may vote early or by absentee ballot. Get your Absentee Ballot here, now: http://www.elections.state.md.us/voting/absentee.html

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Mark Patro September 18, 2012 at 11:36 AM
I agree with your perspective of society defining its own boundaries. Where we disagree is: Which of these boundaries is an unalienable right? It is the right of every person to pursue a loving relationship. The generally accepted result of that pursuit is a permanent relationship. That permanent relationship in our society is called marriage. When (conservative) heterosexuals decide that they wish to retain ownership of the word marriage this puts the undeserved burden of "other" on people who are not heterosexual. Gay, lesbian, and bisexual people exist in this world. We always have and we always will. Marriage is not a heterosexual privilege, it is a human right. Creating another category called “civil union” in not about including anyone. It’s about keeping lesbian, gay, bisexual people and many trans people outside of heterosexually privileged society. As I see it, establishing another category called "civil unions" is the same as creating a separate school system for African American children. This idea was discussed during the Supreme Court trial Brown vs. the Board of Education - 1954. The Supreme Court ruled that "separate but equal" is an unconstitutional idea. It still is.
JD1 September 18, 2012 at 11:54 AM
What are your views on other "diverse" forms of "marriage" such as polygamy or within close family members? Just curious. Also - I, like many others am not a conservative heterosexual but I do reserve using the word marriage for couples that fit the biblical definition since after all, it is a religious covenant.
Mark Patro September 18, 2012 at 11:59 AM
This legislation and Question 6 is not about religion. This law is about everyone having access to civil law. We are talking about court house weddings and marriage certificates issued by the state. Getting a marriage license is no different that getting a driver's license from the state. I do not find it necessary to discuss other forms of relationships. Staying on topic will educate people about this specific piece of legislation. I will discuss polygamy when I see it before the General Assembly. At this moment moment it is an attempt to divert the necessary discussion about the topic on the table.
JD1 September 18, 2012 at 12:04 PM
No it's not - the legislation is about expanding the definition of marriage. I'm asking you where do you draw the line. By not going on record you are just like the "conservatives" that you accuse of being narrow minded because they won't expand their definition to include gay couples. If we are including gay couples, shouldn't we include all couples? See your previous post regarding life, liberty blah blah blah. Here is where your argument crashes and burns.
Mark Patro September 18, 2012 at 12:08 PM
I think I have answered your question. I have said include all "couples". Couple in my mind and the mind of most people is defined by the word "two."


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