Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee is the target of a new anti-gay marriage ad produced by the National Organization for Marriage (NOM), the nation's most vociferous opponent of gay marriage.

In NOM's $100,000 ad campaign launched on Tuesday, the group argues that Chafee's November 2 win wasn't decisive enough for him to back a gay marriage proposal.

“A close race for governor. Lincoln Chafee gets just 36 percent of the vote. Fewer votes than the Cool Moose Party,” a female announcer says with a giggle, referring to Cool Moose perennial candidate Robert Healey's race for Rhode Island lieutenant governor.

“Now Chafee claims a mandate to push gay marriage with no vote of the people. Eighty percent of Rhode Islanders want the chance to vote on marriage just as voters in 31 other states have done,” she adds. (The video is embedded in the right panel of this page.)

In his inauguration speech, Chafee, a Republican turned independent, reiterated his call for lawmakers to legalize gay marriage and argued that the institution would be an economic boom for the state.

“Our message is that getting 36% of the vote is no mandate to redefine the institution of marriage for all of Rhode Island society,” Christopher Plante, executive director of the Rhode Island chapter of NOM, said in a statement.

“In some ways, Lincoln Chafee is an accidental governor for Rhode Island, elected in the most unusual of circumstances. Yet he expects legislators to follow him off the cliff in pursuit of same-sex marriage,” Plante added.

Chafee competed in a field of seven candidates to be elected governor. With the exception of Republican John Robitaille, all candidates publicly supported the government recognition of gay unions. Robitaille received 33 percent of the vote.

Legislators in Rhode Island have considered a gay marriage bill every year since 1997.

Other states expected to consider legislation that would legalize, repeal or ban gay marriage include New Mexico, Maryland, Wyoming, Iowa, New Hampshire and Minnesota. Hawaii lawmakers are expected to consider a civil unions bill.