To show the tenor of the Eastern half of the state, at least, the meeting cheered and applauded when he said he would no longer support the amendment proposed to go on the ballot next year. It needs a second majority vote of the combined legislature to do so.
Someone, maybe Marry in Massachusetts, should begin keeping score. We predict that this is the spark that signals many small (and pretty meaningless) explosions. Senators and Representatives surely are wondering how they can gain advantage here. Salient points include:
- When self-identified religious voters, particularly in exurban and blue-collar communities complained about same-sex marriage, a slim majority of legislators voted for the first passage of the amendment.
- When same-sex marriage proved positive for over a year, the confused and haters have dropped a bit.
- Several anti-gay or anti-same-sex marriage legislators got dumped in the last election, replaced with equality-minded folk.
- Polls show a growing majority of voters are happy with same-sex marriage, or at least don't want to strip existing rights from any group.
- The recalcitrant queers-are-bad group has fewer fellow travelers.
- The anti folk recently turned tail and now support a simple overturning of same-sex marriage and not civil union version. (Not coincidentally this would be much easier to get on the ballot, but not until 2008, by which time, all but the hardest heads will see that same-sex marriage threatens nothing.)
A second prediction – an average of one politician a week announcing a new, firm, morally based position on this...subject to change, of course.