Gay Marriage Could Pass on Ballot for 1st Time

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Gay marriage advocated could see a major victory this fall if one of the four states where the issue is on the ballot grants it legal recognition by popular vote. Polls show most voters in Maryland, Washington and Maine support gay marriage, and in Minnesota, the electorate appears evenly split. "I think it’s very reasonable and realistic to expect that we’ll win one or more of these ballot measures," an official from advocacy group Human Rights Campaign said. But opponents and pollsters alike cautioned that activists shouldn't be too optimistic, since polling has proven unreliable in the past on the issue — namely in California, where Prop 8 banned gay marriage in 2008. “Our experience in polling gay marriage is that if people say they’re undecided it usually means they’re opposed to it,” one pollster said. But advocates note that the margins appearing in the polls are historic. “We were not seeing these kinds of numbers in prior years," said the HRC official. "We’re hoping for all four [states], but even one will really change the conversation."

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