Gay marriage supporters in Maine will
announce on Monday, January 23 whether they will return to the ballot
box this year or wait, Bloomberg
Equality Maine, the state's largest gay
rights group, has collected nearly twice the number of signatures
needed to put the question on the ballot.
“We wouldn't want to move forward
with a campaign that we don't think we are well-positioned to win,”
said Betsy Smith, the group's executive director. “We have to look
at our current level of support, what we accomplished last year and
our plans for this year and make a decision.”
In 2009, gay marriage foes narrowly
(53%) repealed a gay marriage law approved by lawmakers with a
“people's veto” at the ballot box, known as Question 1. Now,
backers hope to make Maine the first state to legalize the
institution through the same democratic process.
“Until we finally win marriage at the
ballot, opponents will always claim that marriage is supported only
by the courts and legislatures, but not by the people,” Smith
Support for marriage equality has grown
since 2009 in the Pine State. A survey released late last year shows
majority of Mainers (51%) now support the institution.