Assorted ninnies and white supremacists are attempting to deface the North Carolina Constitution with anti-gay graffiti via Amendment 1. There’s already no marriage equality in NC, but Amendment 1 is designed to keep same-sex couples in the back of the bus.
Here’s Balloon Juice commenter Jibeaux:
I assume if you’re reading B-J and live in NC that you know about Amendment One. If you’re reading B-J and do not live in NC but know anyone there, please nag them to vote against A1 or dialogue with them about it if they are on the fence. We could be—but are not poised to be—the first in the nation to reject an anti-gay marriage amendment. This amendment would go further than our current statutes and would prohibit recognition of any domestic union other than marriage. If passed, it will throw partner benefits and domestic abuse law into uncertain territory. We need to pull out all the stops on this, if you have any NC stops please get in touch. Thanks for listening.
Also via Jibeaux, a link to an organization that is leading the charge: Protect All NC Families.
Maggie Gallagher’s NOM outfit likes to brag that the anti-gay bigots always win on ballot measures (neglecting to add that many state voters would re-segregate schools if given the opportunity), and the polls don’t look good. But a big turnout by marriage equality supporters could send a huge message. Please do what you can to help.
Thank you, Betty C. I love your posts and style, and I really do appreciate it. If we can defeat this bastard, I will invite you to my party and there will be free booze.
I nearly kicked in my car radio–hard to do because I’m short and have to sit so close to the steering wheel that I’m practically under the dashboard–because Coked Up Roberts was counter-explaining the NC ballot situation. Counterexplaining is when you leave your listeners more confused by your misinformation than when they started. The historic alliance of the Bishops with the Fundangelicals was entirely missing from her account and she put the entire thing down to the Bishops pushing back against Obama’s war on Catholics. Apparently she is under the impression that it is going to be Cathlics voting this thing through in NC and not protestants.
Here we are again…back to moral victories. I say inflict pain on these mouth breathers. It’s what they deserve and understand. Rinse. Repeat.
Thank you for this article. Those of us in NC have been working very hard to defeat this amendment. There is a broad coalition fighting.
Don’t live in NC? You can help us by signing up w/ the Courage Campaign to phone bank today & tomorrow to get out the vote.
I live in NC and on good days, I am hopeful about our chances on this. Why, you ask? Anecdotally, most of my conservative friends are horrified by it and are quite vocal about voting against it. I’m also encouraged by the head of the state’s NAACP being on board with the No side from the beginning.
However…I spent the weekend in western NC (did a half marathon in Ashe county) and was reminded of how ridiculously conservative that area is. I saw pro Amendment One signs all over the damn place – and all the way home, through Gaston, Catawba, and Lincoln counties.
I’ve got a friend who goes to a Presbyterian church in our small, liberal college town and he tells me that their pastor (female) has been using the pulpit to encourage church members to vote against the amendment. So are the Unitarian Universalists and the United Church of Christ folks, of course. But the United Methodists seem to be silent on the issue and the damn Baptists and the evangelicals are as to be expected, firmly in favor of amending our state constitution to discriminate against our brother and sister Tarheels.
So thanks for sending up the bat signal, jibeaux and Betty. It’s going to be a dark day in North Carolina history if this piece of shit passes.
@aimai: eyeroll. It’s going to be people like my neighbor, a lady who sent four kids to Liberty University and has never held a job or worn pants. Or another neighbor, who holds a live nativity every year, homeschools, and has saved her mom jeans from Wal-mart’s 1987 collection. They are not Catholics.
I have lots of other neighbors who are against, what can I say but it’s America, and I already plan that if this fails I’m going to invite everyone who has an anti sign up to my party and get to know the neighbors better.
I don’t know whether it’s good or bad, but I early voted on Saturday and the line was completely unreal. I have never seen a line one quarter that long in twenty years of voting here.
The RCC in NC may end up being in a spot of election campaign finance trouble. Both the RCC diocese of Raleigh and the RCC diocese of Charlotte are among the top 10 money donators to the vote for campaign. Which is their right in this ballot measure. But they then sent a “vote for” mailer out BUT did NOT appear to file any docs w/ the elections board about the political flyer.
eta: the conservative protestant churches like First Baptist in Charlotte have also given a big chunk of money to the “for” group.
All three Episcopalian dioceses in NC have been strongly against.
@merrinc: Well, let me say this for the Baptists. They are believers in a personal relationship with Jesus and not in church hierarchy. Liberal Baptists are a minority, but they are decidedly liberal. And I have seen a professionally printed “another Baptist family against the amendment” sign.
I was quite cheered up by the huge full page ad with all the clergy signatures on it, it was an absolute boatload of signatures.
Forum Transmitted Disease
I’d love to see links on this if you have any. I’m betting those numbers are very high.
My grandmother quit teaching when they integrated the schools. She was adamantly against private schools until the day she died, but she felt that she could not in good conscience continue in a system that would allow black boys potential sexual access to white girls.
She was always a huge backer of public education and insisted her own daughter, my brother and I all go, in spite of desegregation. I’ve spent years trying to tease her viewpoint on this apart and have always failed. She saw something I didn’t. Anyways, if you’ve got links I’d like to read them.
Culture of Truth
I don’t think they want to share the bus. Too many gay cooties.
Sorry, I tend to forget that there is such a thing as liberal Baptists because they seem to be so outnumbered by the ones who make me crazy.
I am curious about the legislative mechanics of this – do you know why it’s on the primary ballot and not the general? A friend’s daughter is 17 now but will be 18 by the general so she is allowed to vote on candidates in the primary but not on this issue and she is simply outraged. As she should be, since her generation will either have to live with it or do a fuckton of work to change it.
I haven’t actually seen any signs that a for it, in places like Chapel Hill there are signs everywhere against (though I guess that’s to be expected).
Culture of Truth
Before Cokie: Hawaii – pretty state with palm trees and beaches, associated with surfing, hulu, coconuts, coffee, Pearl Harbor, Magnum PI, Lost and the Brady Bunch episode
After Cokie: Hawaii – a scary exotic foreign country with rich Kenyan socialists who hate America
@merrinc: The Republicans who put it on there wanted it on the primary ballot. At the time, they anticipated a possibly competitive R presidential primary and that Bev Perdue would run again, so they saw no reason for Democrats to turn out for the primary. It didn’t shake out that way, which is good, but at the time I think they thought they were upping their odds. I feel really bad for the 17 year olds only voting in the primary. All I could suggest would be to make sure her friends of voting age know about it. The youth vote turnout is going to be a huge factor. I don’t know what to make of the early voting statistics — the voters seem old, with an average age of 58, but it’s also heavy in all the places we want it to be heavy, like Durham, Orange, Buncombe.
Definitely voting NO on this one. NOM can go pound sand.
@merrinc: It is on the primary ballot and not the general b/c that is the ONLY way the sponsors in the NC leg could get enough votes to put it on any ballot this year. They crammed it through at the last day of a specially called session w/o any public comment.
In this weekend’s Fayetteville paper, Stam (main sponsor) said he wanted one type of language for the bill but was “overruled” (direct quote) by the Alliance Defense Fund (a national fundie Xian legal group).
@merrinc: I’d put it this way — she should find someone who wasn’t going to vote and get that person to the polls, and that will be just the same thing as her having her vote heard.
@Forum Transmitted Disease: Alas, no links: just an educated guess from a lifelong Dixie resident.
I just drove down from the Henderson area this weekend. A “vote against” sign was nowhere to be found until the Wake Co border, where I’d bet that “vote against” signs outnumber the “vote for” signs 10 to 1 (no exaggeration).
That said, there were not a lot of pro-1 signs in the rural areas, but shitloads of anti-1 signs in the urban and urban-ish areas.
The split between the rural and urban areas is going to be huge on this measure… I do think it’s possible 1 will be defeated if GOTV is as good in the urban areas as the signage suggests.
@aimai: Yes. If Obama wasn’t in charge, there would be no local referendums like this. O.K. Cokie. Now in 2004 when Obama was just a glimmer of hope who gave a great speech at the convention, where were all these amendments coming from?
Yeah, she’s already doing that. Her mom is very active in a women’s political organization and the teen did her senior HS exit project on LGBT acceptance.
If Thom Tillis and his un-merry band of fucktards actually thought there would be a competitive race for the GOP presidential nod in NC, they’re even dumber than I thought.
@merrinc: I’m very glad to hear it. Involved young people are the absolute best. I don’t really know what they thought about whether it’d be competitive. I guess it could also be true, since they got a few dimwitted blue dogs to go along with this, that the blue dogs wanted it on that date so that the evangelical vote wouldn’t be all hopped up for their own re-elections in November. I don’t know, it would be awesome if we could get an answer from them as candid as Tillis gave when he admitted that if this passes the next generation will undo it.
Same thing here in MN. This appears to be the leading organization dedicated to defeating this assault on gay rights.
It is my understanding (from several folks that would know) that this is true. There were not enough votes to get it on the Nov. ballot. The only way it passed (b/c they did need some conserv. dem. votes) was by moving it to the primary ballot.
Cris (without an H)
Why do you liberals hate the first amendment?
Because a handful of blue-dog democrat state legislators struck a deal with GOP state legislators to give them the necessary votes to put Amendment 1 on the ballot (state constitutional amendments in NC require both super-majority state legislative approval (first) and then voter approval in a referendum). The quid pro quo the blue-dog dems got in return was that Amendment would be on the May primary ballot rather than the November general election ballot, because the blue dogs did not want the measure driving up GOP/right wing turnout in the general election, and the concern was that because the GOP was only a small handful of votes shy in the legislature of passing approval to put the Amendment on the ballot, they might succeed through wheeling and dealing with some other conservadems in relatively safe seats who might be willing to trade pork for yes votes.
The blue dogs making this deal were not much committed to gay rights in the first place, and figured the dems overall interests (including at the Presidential level, but most particularly their own personal re-election prospects) would be much better served by making sure Amendment one did not come up to adversely affect turnout in the general election, and so gays were thrown under the bus.
Just wanted to say thanks to everyone in North Carolina who is working on this.
It will mean a lot to gays across the country if they fail to get this one through even in a Southern state in a primary where they expected that the more conservative voters were more likely to show up.
Polls on this haven’t been very optimistic, but I’m hoping that the clusterfuck at the “Marriage Summit” shocked enough people to their senses to kill this one. Fingers crossed.
@curiousleo: From my recollection of the short session, that’s exactly what happened.
I’m going to keep working until the polls close tomorrow night but I can’t help but feel like, as I talk to a woefully uninformed electorate, that this winnable campaign was hampered by a Martha Coakley-esque ineptitude.
@natthedem: What did you see as inept? I have really seen what looks like a good campaign. For one thing, they figured out early on that framing it as a gay marriage issue was not a winner, but that focusing on unintended consequences to straight people as well as precluding any possibility of civil unions was. I am not entirely comfortable with that messaging, but we have to go with what works and if people are not ready for gay marriage but another tack works, then that’s where we have to go. I also saw that strategy to drive a wedge between the black community and the gay etc. community be attacked, with the parties who were supposed to baited into sniping at each other refusing to play along. But I’d be curious to see if you saw something different.
Can we finally call McCain a bullshitting propagandist?
Palin “well qualified” to be President? Whaaaaaaaaaaat?
I live in Wake Co., NC, and there’s been a huge turnout in the early voting in this area. Usually for primaries, I’ll vote early and when I put the ballot in the scanner (we use scantron sheets), I’ll be voter no. 136 or 215 or something similar. Friday, when I went to early voting I was no. 5,336. So, definitely a big turnout in Raleigh/Wake County.
Sadly, I don’t think it will be enough. Hopes are high and an upset is always possible, but polling is not encouraging right now. I’ve got my fingers crossed because this poorly-written piece of legislation is liable to create a fair amount of legal chaos.
The potential legal mischief is, I believe, a feature and not a bug. The anti-gay forces are also into doing all sorts of things in order to penalize people for (a) having any non-marital relationship and (b) trying to get a divorce. Making people get married and stay married is a “good” thing regardless of abuse, the effect on children, or the desires of individuals (esp. women) to exercise control over their lives. Also, too, penalizing women for having unauthorized sex is a big goal of most of the wingnuts underwriting this crap, so domestic violence is deserved, loss of insurance or other benefits is fitting punishment, etc., etc.
@Sinister eyebrow: I don’t know if you’ve ever been to the Optimist Community Center, but when I voted on Sat. I waited about 1.5 hours. By the time I left, the line was twice as long and ran all the way through the trail in the woods to the parking lot. I know they had to let everyone in line at 1 pm. vote, but it did pour down rain about 2:30 or so, so I don’t know how many stayed, but I was completely blown away by that line.
@jibeaux: Last night, PPP released the final polling on Amendment One prior to the election and noted this:
There’s no way to look at those statistics and think that the Protect All NC Families campaign has been effective in their work. Last month, the Charlotte Observer, who has been a vocal opponent of the Amendment, called the effort of Protect All NC Families a “stealth campaign” and questioned its efficacy. They could’ve gone on TV long ago with spots touting Amendment One opposition from a bipartisan set of political and business leaders. What good is a Youtube video with Harvey Gantt or Richard Vinroot if no one (who doesn’t agree with you already) sees it?
You make the point that framing it as a gay marriage bill wasn’t a winner and that’s true but polls from Elon and PPP have said that framing it as a ban on civil unions and/or domestic partnerships (which a majority of North Carolinians do support and would be banned under this Amendment) may have. It’s not clear why there wasn’t a change of course or why messages weren’t targeted to certain demographics (via TV or radio). I’d like to have seen that quote from Sen. Brunstetter’s wife dropped into urban radio ads to emphasize the points Rev. Barber (President of the NC NAACP) was making on the Melissa Harris-Perry show on Saturday…but alas, it barely got a mention on local news and has been long sense forgotten.
@Sinister eyebrow: It was all those side effects on real people ( eg. hard right Christians who wanted to use in vitro fertilization) that killed the Mississippi human life amendment – or whatever the heck it was called.
Plus there was a nicely focussed campaign against it.
I still do not know if other ones will ride under the radar
in the 2012 election. It may be there was money ( and available people) sloshing around for a campaign in a 2011 election that would be absorbed by the 2012 general election.
@natthedem: Oh, I know about the ignorance factor. I posted about it on FB just this morning. I just don’t necessarily attribute it to Protect All NC Families. It happens in every election and on pretty much every issue, as there is just a large subset of the electorate that is uninformed. I do not for the life of me understand how, unless they live in caves, but they do. It happened with Wake Co. school board, when people said, “yeah, I voted for him, but I didn’t know they were going to dismantle the assignment policy!” Well, they talked about dismantling the assignment policy ALL THE TIME. It was Issue number 1, 2, 3, and 4, and all the newspapers talked about it constantly.
Mike in NC
Took advantage of early voting to vote against this idiotic amendment (too bad the GOP-majority in Raleigh can’t be concerned with actual issues like unemployment and education) and held my nose and picked the Republican ballot so I could vote against Rmoney before having to wait for November.
Very nervous here in MN. A narrow yes vote in NC may be the best we can get. A blowout yes would F up our mojo a bit, but also maybe scare the national donors?
I dunno. Of course I’d love to see a reverse Bradley effect in the NC polling. People know they ‘should’ vote yes b/c their christiaist neighbors deem it g-dly, but they’ll vote no tomorrow? I can hope.
Also, turnout’s gotta happen. Oy vey.
I donated a pretty decent chunk week ago Friday to NC to Protect Families, to help buy ads for the close. If anyone wants to help w/ $$s in the coming months for MN, go here please. Thank you.
@jibeaux: I voted at Optimist Park on Friday.
And ignorance runs high in our electorate as a general rule, goes hand in hand with poor reading comprehension. If the polling is shifting in favor of sinking this idiotic Amendment, then I’m glad to hear it.
Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism
I’ve been talking up the unintended consequences every chance I get. “It’s already happened in other states” made quite an impact on a guy whose daughter is in the getting-the-restraining-order stage of escaping from an abusive boyfriend.
It looks like all their GOTV efforts have been through the churches; I’ve only heard from the R’s three times since the primary season started. Once from Americans for Prosperity trolling for primary candidates, again from AfP trolling for delegate candidates, and one robocall from Tim D’Annunzio. No mailers or calls at all about the amendment.
Another North Carolinian
My wife and I (we’re plumbed the way the right approves) voted against A1 in western NC on Saturday. Later, I saw a poll indicating that despite all the coverage and talk, 7% believed that a vote for A1 was a vote for gay marriage. I’m guessing most of that 7% can be counted on to vote against gay marriage and therefore against what they think A1 says. This is good for our side and is not a small number if they actually turn out and vote. I’m hoping the polls are failing to account for enthusiasm on the NO side and over-estimating turn-out on the YES side now that Curly, Larry, and Shemp have dropped out.
I got a Bill Clinton robo call asking folks to vote against the amendment this weekend. he led w/ “gay marriage is already illegal” and stressed all the potential problems.
It looks to me as though the Protect NC Families effort has been to GOTV in the liberal/urban enclaves. There are anti-Amendment One signs EVERYWHERE in Durham, Wake, and Orange counties. And I’ve never seen more political yard signs in my quiet neighborhood in the 10 years I’ve lived here.
Some of the confusion on the part of the electorate is that the law is written so badly that it isn’t at all clear what is being proposed. Also, at least on the early-voting ballot I filled out, the amendment was the only thing on the reverse side, so I wonder how many people are missing it.
They didn’t win in Washington in 2009, and they are not going to win this year either.
I argee with much that has already been posted here. It is an urban vs. rural split. Anecdotal evidence; I was in a 66 mile bike ride in the rural northwestern foothills on Saturday and nearly every church I passed had FOR amendment one signs posted. So clearly that is the backbone of support for this absurdity. I also failed to see a single AGAINST sign in a single yard. That has been my general observations in all the rural counties I have visited this year.
When I voted Friday, a bus was brining in folks from nearby assisted living (nursing) home. The average age for an early voter this year is 58! Juicers, try not told hold this against our entire state when it becomes part of the state constitution on Wednesday.
Evolving Deep Southerner
Not dumb, just distracted. Seems like everybody on his staff is (literally) in bed with a different lobbyist.
I’ll proudly go and cast my “no” vote tomorrow. I want to think that we’ll overcome the odds and defy the polling, but I don’t want to get my hopes up.
At least my first vote as a North Carolinian will be against something I’m proud to vote against.