NUMBERS GAME

NC’s Amendment One Has Double-Digit Lead, Expected To Pass

Y’know, we’ve been seeing so much positive change happening for gay people across America that when something really crappy happens it feels like a slap across the face. And our cheek is still red from hearing that North Carolina’s Amendment One—which would codify marriage as between one man and one woman—is likely to win at the voting booth on Tuesday.

Proponents of the measure—which would negate civil unions and domestic partnerships of any stripe, gay or straight—are leading by 16 points according to a poll released this weekend by the nonpartisan Public Policy Polling.

Our final marriage amendment poll finds it leading by a 55-39 margin, little change from a week ago when it was ahead 55-41. The final yes percentage will likely be somewhere in the 57-59% range depending on how the undecideds break. Opponents of the amendment had an uphill battle in convincing voters that it was anything other than a referendum on gay marriage, even though it does go a lot further than that. 57% of voters in the state think gay marriage should be illegal (to only 34% who think it should be legal) and it’s not a coincidence that number correlates so closely with the 55% planning to support the amendment.

…Just 24 hours until election day only 46% of voters realize the proposal bans both gay marriage and civil unions. Those informed voters oppose the amendment by a 61-37 margin, but there may not be enough time left to get the rest of the electorate up to speed.

Record turnout is expect at the polling stations tomorrow.

Officials in various cities have been expressing frustration and concern regarding the future of existing protections:

“We are the first county in North Carolina that offered health benefits to domestic partners,” says Orange County Commissioner Bernadette Pelissier. “If Amendment One [passes], we would be obliged to cease providing that benefit.”

Chapel Hill Town Council member Penny Rich believes Tuesday will be a “tense” day for the college town: “In Chapel Hill we are liberally minded… We all have one thing in common and that’s to beat the amendment.”

Good luck, folks. If we believed in a higher power you’d be in our prayers.

Photo: Vote Against Amendment One