Pollster: Wash. Could Become First State To Affirm Gay Marriage

fromNWNews

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Polls indicate a looming vote in Washington over same-sex marriage could be close. Wednesday, the campaign to repeal the state’s new marriage equality law will submit its petitions to the Secretary of State.

Thirty-two times in 32 states, voters have said marriage should remain between one man and one woman. The most recent vote was last month in North Carolina. But pollster Matt Barreto at the University of Washington says, “It could be that Washington state is poised to make history on this issue.”

Barreto notes that in 2009 Washington voters upheld an everything-but-marriage domestic partnership law. He also points to his Washington Poll where support for gay marriage has gone from 30 percent to 43 percent since 2006.

“What that shows is that people who strongly support same-sex marriage are already into their mid-40s," Barreto says. "And that means that’s not a lot of more people that they need to convince to come over to that other side.”

At the same time, Barreto says a significant number of Washington voters are okay with civil rights for gay and lesbian couples, but believe marriage goes too far. It’s voters in the middle who may ultimately decide the fate of Referendum 74.

On the Web:

R-74 Q&A:

http://sos.wa.gov/elections/R74FAQ.aspx

Referendum 74 - full text:

http://www.sos.wa.gov/elections/initiatives/text/r074.pdf

Copyright 2012 Northwest News Network

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