Californians Canvassing Maine to Support Marriage Equality

The battle lines have been drawn again on the opposite corner of the country, where a little help could go a long way

By Jackson West
|  Thursday, Oct 1, 2009  |  Updated 2:00 PM PDT
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Californians Canvassing Maine to Support Marriage Equality

samm4mrox / Flickr

Organizations like Equality Maine are getting help from Californians to spread the gospel of equal rights under the law.

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Money and volunteers flowed into California last year to help the passage of Proposition 8, which took away marriage rights from thousands of Californians.

Now the tables have turned, as Maine considers its own anti-equality ballot initiative, becoming the new battleground over civil rights for same-sex couples.

Maine's state legislature passed the Act to Promote Marriage Equality and Affirm Religious Freedom, granting state recognition of same-sex marriages, and the bill was signed into law by the governor earlier this year.

But opponents are trying to use the "People's Veto" process to have the law overturned.

So Travel for Change, initially formed to send California supporters of Barack Obama's presidential campaign to swing states like Nevada and Colorado, is now sending troops to Maine to keep the law from being overturned by popular vote.

Supporters can donate frequent flier miles and plane tickets to volunteers who promise to travel to Maine and talk to locals about the measure.

Donations can also be made to organizations within the state. As of June 2009, the Stand for Maine Marriage, which supports the veto, has received much larger contributions than the Protect Maine Equality campaign, which opposes the veto.

So while the summer season is over, it might be time to plan a trip, help someone else make the pilgrimmage or at least throw some money at the problem.

Photo by Flickr user samm4mrox.

Jackson West figures with that kind of chump change, a single closeted Hollywood star could tip the balance of power with a couple of million.

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