Proponents of a referendum which would
legalize gay marriage in Maine have outraised opponents.
According to the Press Herald,
Mainers United for Marriage, the primary group working to approve the
measure, has raised this year nearly eight times the amount of money
raised by Protect Marriage Maine.
Mainers United for Marriage raised
$3.35 million, while Protect Marriage Maine has raised $429,794.
Campaign finance reports show
proponents raised money from thousands of donors, while opponents had
fewer than 125 individual donors.
With a paid staff of four and a
television buy of $153,000, Protect Marriage Maine reported that it
was $48,500 in debt.
Carroll Conley of Protect Marriage
Maine said the campaign expects to raise $1.2 million.
“I think we're still going to meet
our mark,” he
told the paper.
Foes are expected to debut their first
ads on Monday.
Matt McTighe, campaign manager for
Mainers United, said he expects to raise $5 million.
“Thousands of Mainers have
contributed to our campaign to allow same-sex couples to receive a
marriage license from the state,” McTighe said in a statement. “We
see that people are changing their minds, but we know the hardest
part of the campaign is yet to come.”
According to a
recent poll, Question 1 holds a 21-point lead (57% in favor, 36%
opposed). But the issue was also leading in surveys in 2009, when
opponents turned to the public to repeal a marriage equality law
approved by lawmakers.
If approved on November 6, Maine would
become the first state to legalize gay nuptials by referendum.