How To Get 63% of Americans to Support the Freedom to Marry. (Maybe.)

FiveThirtyEight
June 11, 2009
When marriage equality is polled, it is almost always framed as a positive right, as in: "Should the government permit same sex couples to get married?" But there is a different way to frame the question that is no less fair, and flips the issue on its head. Namely: "Should the government be allowed to prohibit same sex couples from getting married?" This is closer to the logic embodied by the court decisions in Iowa, California, Massachusetts, and other states, and to the Marriage Resolution framed by Freedom to Marry:
Because marriage is a basic human right and an individual choice, RESOLVED, the state should not interfere with same-gender couples who choose to marry and share fully and equally in the rights, responsibilities, and commitment of civil marriage.
[Link]

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Marriage Equality: A Tipping Point?

columbia.edu
June 11, 2009
Jeff Lax and Justin Phillips have used statistical analysis to estimate attitudes toward marriage equality state-by-state. They used national opinion polls from 1994 through 2009 and analyzed several different opinion questions on gay rights. They found, among other things, that approximately as much change has occurred in attitudes toward marriage equality in the last four years as in the previous eight, and that states with higher levels of early support changed the most - possibly due to more gay people being "out" and visible in those states. [Link]

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Voice for Equality: Joe Bruno

Joe Bruno is a businessman and Republican politician. He was the Temporary President of the New York State Senate and its majority leader.

Bruno, in an interview in June of 2009 about the freedom to marry bill pending in the New York legislature, said, "It's time. Now. For the government to back off, let people make their own life decisions, and about who they care about and who they don't care about...."

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Focus on Freedom to Marry Stays on State Fights

Associated Press
May 27, 2009
California's status as a guardian of gay rights slipped this week when its highest court upheld a voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage, even as other states extended the institution to gay couples. The focus, however, remained on working though state legislatures and voters to win marriage rights, said Evan Wolfson, executive director of New York-based Freedom to Marry.
"Winning marriage in more states is crucial not only for the families living in those states, but for creating a comfort level that sets the stage for a national resolution," he said. [link]

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After California Ruling, Will More States Favor Marriage Equality?

CNN
May 26, 2009

CNN.com's Ed Hornick examines the political and cultural shifts toward marriage equality, noting advances this year in Iowa, Vermont, Maine and the District of Columbia, as well as growing support from moderate Republicans. [Link]

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Gay Legislators Plant Seeds for Rights Gains

Detroit News
May 13, 2009
Deb Price: "When the gay marriage suddenly burst into full bloom across much of New England and in Iowa this spring, I immediately thought of my sweet peas: When conditions are right, some seeds produce very quickly. Others take a bit of time. The really good news is that years and years of spadework have created the right conditions in much of the nation." [link]

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ACLU Pushes for Marriage Equality Nationwide

UPI.com
May 11, 2009
Ending discrimination in marriage for gay couples throughout the United States remains a top ACLU priority, said Anthony Romero, 43, the first openly gay person and, first Puerto Rican, to head the 89-year-old ACLU. Acknowledging marriage equality faces an uphill battle in many states, Romero said, "We are used to being David to the government's Goliath. We've done a pretty good job with our slingshot so far." [link]

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Marriage Equality Debate Fades in Massachusetts

Ft. Wayne Journal Gazette
May 10, 2009
At the time of the first weddings by gay couples in Massachusetts, the debate was red-hot – protests were frequent, expectations ran high that legislators would allow a referendum on whether to overturn the court ruling ordering an end to marriage discrimination. Now there is overwhelming political support for the freedom to marry. [link]

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Marriage EqualitySpreads Without Backlash

ABC News
April 22, 2009

A flurry of state-level activity is dramatically expanding marriage equality in the United States. A court ruling in Iowa and a legislative vote in Vermont made them the third and fourth states to legalize same-sex couples' marriages, and moves are under way for states including New York, Connecticut and New Hampshire to join them soon. Yet beyond the expected condemnation from conservative leaders, the stunning series of events is notable for how little it's reverberated across the national political landscape. [Link]

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Backlash backfires

365Gay.com
April 22, 2009


New numbers show the idea of marriage equality is advancing in nearly all 50 states despite a much-parodied ad from opponents. 365 talks to polling guru Nate Silver (who accurately predicted the presidential election and the World Series winner) about the trend and takes a look at how the backlash ad backfired. [Link]

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