Voters in North Carolina have passed an anti-gay marriage law into the state Constitution, allowing marriage exclusively between a man and a woman and denying marriage equality to its citizens.
On Tuesday, more than 1.5 million people cast their votes for or against Amendment 1. The results, according to the State Board of Elections as reported by the Guardian, were 61% in favor to 39% against of passing the law into the constitution. With North Carolina being a conservative state, its no surprise that the majority has voted in support of the law, nonetheless, the opponents had been hoping against all odds. "We have been down in the polls, and this certainly is not coming as a surprise," said Paul Guequierre, of the Coalition to Protect North Carolina Families, according to a report on CNN. "But it is certainly not what we had hoped for."
Opponents argue the amendment could potentially trigger domestic violence for women while affecting couple’s health benefits. Linda Toanone, who voted against the amendment, said people are born gay and it is not their choice. The “ amendment is against women, I believe, because also underneath the amendment, other laws are saying that people who aren’t married at all, they can’t file for domestic abuse cases, if they’re living with their significant other. Which is wrong,” she said.
Tami Fitzgerald, the head of Vote for Marriage NC, said she knew in her heart that the people of North Carolina would not let opponents of the law from redefining the traditional marriages. "We are not anti-gay, we are pro-marriage," she said. "And the point -- the whole point -- is simply that you don't rewrite the nature of God's design for marriage based on the demands of a group of adults."
The North Carolina Democratic Party released a statement on Tuesday, saying that the results were a setback to the efforts, but the state will not lose hope and will continue to fight for equal rights. The amendment makes North Carolina the 30th state to have a constitution banning same-sex marriage. Same-sex marriage is at present, legal in six states as well as Washington D.C.
President Obama has long supported same-sex marriages; however, so far he has not endorsed Marriage Equality rights as part of his re-election campaign. The passage in North Carolina at such a crucial time, however, is not necessarily an indication of the fall of the Obama Administration or the Democrats, for that matter.