Election 2008

Gary Kazanjian/AP

Gay Marriage Opposition Has Success on Election Day

November 05, 2008 12:30 PM
by findingDulcinea Staff
In a close vote, Californians appear to have passed a gay marriage ban, which would make it the third state to do so this Election Day.

California Appears to Have Outlawed Gay Marriage

California's ballot measure banning same-sex marriages, Proposition 8, will pass, the Los Angeles Times projects. With only 5 percent of the vote uncounted, 52.1 percent of the electorate favor the measure, while 47.9 percent oppose it. Arizona and Florida have approved gay marriage bans of their own.

The measure throws "into doubt the unions of an estimated 18,000 same-sex couples who wed during the last 4 1/2 months," according to the LA Times.

California’s Proposition 8 garnered national attention as high-profile supporters and opponents broadcast their feelings about whether same-sex marriage should be prohibited. It was the most expensive campaign ever about a social issue in the state, with both sides of the issue raising almost $74 million.

Companies like Apple
, Google, Levi Strauss and Pacific Gas & Electric joined the opposition or lent financial resources to fight the measure.

Arizona and Florida Also Take Up the Gay Marriage Debate

Both Florida and Arizona passed gay marriage bans on Tuesday night similar to the California measure.

Proposition 102 passed in Arizona with 56 percent of the vote, according to CNN. In Florida, voters opted for the ban by a margin of 62-38 percent.

In Florida, The Gainesville Sun reported before the prohibition passed that, “The rawest emotions in this grueling election campaign may not be focused on the presidential race, but on the 37 words that make up a ban on gay marriage known as Amendment 2.”

Amendment 2, which was Florida’s attempt at including a gay marriage ban in its state constitution, was meant to stop a judge “from reversing the state’s existing legal ban on gay marriage and eroding the very bedrock of the country,” proponents argued. Opponents contended that the amendment would jeopardize many rights and benefits even straight couples enjoy, such as healthcare coverage.

This year marked the second time in two years that Arizona voters dealt with the gay marriage issue, according to the Associated Press. Like Florida, Arizona has already banned gay marriage, but an amendment to its constitution "would prevent judges from one day overturning that law," the Associated Press explained.

Connecticut Legalizes Same-Sex Unions

In October, Connecticut became the third state to legalize same-sex marriage. A lower court had previously ruled that civil unions would suffice in the state, but the Conn. Supreme Court overturned the decision in an 85-page, 4-3 majority ruling. The Hartford Courant reported that in the decision, Justice Richard Palmer wrote, “we reject the trial court’s decision that marriage and civil unions are ‘separate’ but ‘equal’ entities.”

Democrats in both Connecticut and Hawaii made headlines this campaign season for coming out against the possibility of a Constitutional Convention to alter each state’s constitution. In Connecticut, the issue of gay marriage may take precedence, as supporters of a convention have been galvanized by their opposition to the state court ruling that found civil unions to be unconstitutional, “setting the scene for gay marriage in Connecticut starting in mid-November,” according to The Connecticut Post.

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