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Same-sex marriage (SSM) activity in Maryland

2012-JAN & FEB: Poll results. Maryland
Marriage Equality
clergy press conference.

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This is a continuation from a previous essay

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2012-JAN-29: Results of Washington Post poll on SSM:

The poll asked: "... would you favor or oppose a state law that would allow gay and lesbian couples to get married?"

Results:

  • 50% of those polled favored legalizing SSM,
  • 44% were opposed and
  • 6% were undecided or did not respond.

The greatest support for SSM was Baltimore City at 60%; the greatest opposition was in Prince Georges County at 59%.

71% of whites but only 41% of blacks support SSM. 1

As in other states, most African Americans remain heavily opposed, largely for religious reasons. A 6 percentage point margin is close and could probably be overcome with an extensive fear-based advertising campaign as was so successful in California and elsewhere.

A random sample of 1,064 adults was taken. The margin of error is ±3.5 percentage points. 2

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2012-JAN-31: Governor O'Malley urges support for SSM bill before Senate committee:

Governor Martin O'Malley (D) testified before the Senate Judicial Hearings Committee urged legislators to support the SSM bill. He called it a sign of:

"... equal respect for the freedom of all. ... The very reason for our state's founding was for religious freedom. At the heart of religious freedom is respect for the freedom of individual conscience. ... The way forward, the way to sustain and enhance our common life together, is equal respect for the freedom of all." 1

If passed, the bill would give loving, committed same-sex couples the freedom to marry, while it also gives religious institutions the freedom to discriminate against the same couples by refusing to marry such couples. It would also give the freedom to marry same-sex couples to liberal and progressive religious groups,

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Poll results 2007 to 2012-JAN, including our estimates for election day results on 2012-NOV:

From the polling data reported in this section of the web site:

Date Favor SSM Oppose SSM Margin in percentage points
2007
44%
51%
7 points opposed
2010-MAY
48%
44%
4 points in favor
2012-JAN
50%
44%
6  points in favor
2012-NOV (est.)
52%
42%
10 points in favor (est.)

Our estimate for the election day referendum, which we assume will occur if the legislature passes a SSM bill, is based upon four factors:

  • The gradual increase in acceptance of same-sex marriage as additional teens enter the voting pool will continue.
  • The increasing alienation from conservative religious groups by teens and young adults will continue.
  • The debate about SSM during 2012-JAN to 2012-APR in the legislature should accelerate acceptance of SSM.
  • We assume that a straightforward, unambiguous question will be asked on the referendum.

However, a major investment of fear-based TV and print ads by those opposed to SSM would certainly sway many voters away from supporting SSM, at least temporarily.

See also this section's menu for a summary of polls taken during 2011 and 2012.

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2012-JAN-31: Governor O'Malley urges support for SSM bill before Senate committee:

Governor Martin O'Malley (D) testified before the Senate Judicial Hearings Committee urged legislators to support the SSM bill. He called it a sign of:

"... equal respect for the freedom of all. ... The very reason for our state's founding was for religious freedom. At the heart of religious freedom is respect for the freedom of individual conscience. ... The way forward, the way to sustain and enhance our common life together, is equal respect for the freedom of all." 3

If passed, the bill would give loving, committed same-sex couples the freedom to marry, while it also gives religious institutions the freedom to discriminate against the same couples by refusing to marry such couples. It would also give the freedom to marry same-sex couples to liberal and progressive religious groups,

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2012-FEB-01 (approximately): Maryland Marriage Equality clergy press conference:

Sister Jeannine Gramick of New Ways Ministry -- a Roman Catholic group supporting the LGBT community -- spoke at the Maryland Marriage Equality clergy press conference. The clergy at the press conference support the SSM bill introduced in the Maryland legislature. 4

She said, in part:

"I speak on behalf of the majority of U.S. Catholics who favor legal marriage for same-gender couples. ... [this position] flows from our own church's social justice teaching. ... Marriage equality is politically right and morally right."

Recent public opinion polls that collect data on the public's support and opposition to same-sex marriage consistently show that a majority of American adults favor legalizing SSM. A few polls ask the polled subjects about their religion. They show that the Catholic laity supports SSM slightly more than do persons of other religions. The Catholic hierarchy, of course, is unalterably opposed to SSM.

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Discussion of this topic continues...

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References used:

The following information sources were used to prepare and update the above essay. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.

  1. Ian Simpson, "Maryland governor urges legalization of same-sex marriage," Reuters, 2012-JAN-31. at: http://www.chicagotribune.com/
  2. "Maryland politics poll," The Washington Post, 2012-JAN-29, at: http://www.washingtonpost.com/
  3. Ian Simpson, "Maryland governor urges legalization of same-sex marriage," Reuters, 2012-JAN-31. at: http://www.chicagotribune.com/
  4. Sarah Posner, "Maryland Nun: Most Catholics Disagree with Bishops on Gay Marriage," Religion Dispatches, 2012-FEB-06, at: http://www.religiondispatches.org/

Site navigation: Home > Homosexuality > Same-sex marriage > Menu > MD > here

Copyright © 2011 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Originally written: 2012-JAN
Latest update: 2012-FEB-18
Author: B.A. Robinson

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