Minnesota marriage amendment "looks like a toss up," says new poll of likely voters

Categories: GLBT
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Who's to be believed? It depends on whether you think unlikely-to-vote Minnesotans should be included in the polling.
SEE ALSO:
-- Minnesota marriage amendment supported by 50 percent, opposed by 43, new poll says
-- Support growing for gay marriage in Minnesota, new polling suggests
-- Marriage amendment means it's a great time to be in Minnesota's media business


Polling is an inexact science, ya'll.

Yesterday, we told you about a SurveyUSA poll that found 50 percent of Minnesotans support the state's proposed same-sex marriage ban, compared to 43 percent opposed. Now today, a new Public Policy Polling survey concludes that the amendment vote "looks like a toss up." So what gives?

From PPP:
PPP's newest poll on the constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage in Minnesota finds it virtually tied, with 48% of voters supporting the ban to 47% who oppose it [the margin of error is 3.4 percent]. In January we found 48/44 support for the ban, while in June we found 49/43 opposition. It looks like a toss up.

Women (52/41), Democrats (78/16), and voters under 45 (50/45) all oppose the ban. Men (55/41), Republicans (80/17), independents (51/42), and seniors (53/40) all support it in greater numbers though.
What accounts for the disparity between the SurveyUSA and PPP results? One difference between their respective methodologies is that SurveyUSA surveys adult Minnesotans whether or not they're likely to vote, whereas PPP limits its sample to "likely Minnesota voters." So if it's assumed that the unlikely-to-vote Minnesotans polled by SurveyUSA are largely opposed to the marriage amendment, then PPP's numbers may actually represent a better picture of what the results would be if the election happened today.

Though the predictive value of polls is arguable, their political value is not. Just minutes after PPP's new results were released, Minnesotans United for All families offered up this tweet:For PPP's full results, including the latest about the voter ID amendment (almost certain to be approved), the popularity of Minnesota's leading Republicans (still on par with the popularity of cold viruses), and even the popularity of Gardy (surprisingly strong), click here.


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16 comments
VoteNO
VoteNO

Bob, as a volunteer for MN United for All Families I can tell you we adapt our conversations to the people we speak with. These conversations take a variety of approaches, one of which is that adding language to the MN constitution which disenfranchises a group of people is not the purpose of our constitution. As you said, what we need to sell to those on the fence is yes, the status quo remains if this amendment is defeated. I use that persuasion every time I make calls. Same sex marriage is illegal in MN, and will be on November 7.  

 

If Mn United appears strongly pro same-sex marriage, we are.  If this confuses the issue at hand, I believe the goal is ultimately opening conversations for the future, if the amendment is defeated.

 

MN United is running a simple, persuasive, and respectful campaign. It is about personal stories, and how people we care deeply about are affected by this amendment.  It is not about facts, figures, and arguments.  We're not trying to convince folks whose beliefs systems cannot be altered.  We're having conversations with people who are undecided, and as we have those conversations, we adapt them to address their specific concerns, whether it's the government staying out of people's personal lives, religious conflicts, fears about gay people raising kids, etc.

 

I can't speak to what MN United's media campaign will look like in the coming months, other than the ad that's currently in rotation.  I, too, hope they will sell status quo, as I believe many people are confused by the amendment and think they are choosing for or against same-sex marriage.  There is a clarity that is currently missing that needs to be a broader message.

 

lund519, it's not clear to me from your post how you intend to vote on the amendment.  You have strong feelings about your experiences in this community, and I wish you the best, and a long-term, committed relationship, if that is something you desire.  If you are against the amendment, consider volunteering as I think you would meet some lovely people who are very dedicated to a different future.

lund519
lund519

From the many years I've been out and the many gay men & women I've known, I wish I had a better message, but the percentage of gay people I've known, in a marriage-ready relationship, is almost zero.  If you want to support gay marriage, you must have a healthy gay community - one where gay people can FIND each other, learn how to date, know how to go on dates and meet each other - these are things that are rapidly disappearing as gay people stop going out to cafes and gay meeting spaces and live behind screen names in online chat rooms pretending to be someone they wish were them rather than living life openly and fearlessly.  I no longer see gay people appearing happy, nor do I see an interest among gay people to meet one another.  We've become arrogant, mean-spirited and rude towards each other ('Don't bother talking to me unless you look like this, have this amount of money, this level of education, etc') and this has become a gay world that I no longer want anything to do with.  It's truly become a place where our only commonality is a physical attraction towards the same sex, and that, too, is something where gay people generally have no interest in other gay people; instead we are sold images of young straight college athletes who are so financially desperate they're willing to go to this extreme for quick cash.  In the meantime, more and more young closeted gay people have no intentions of ever coming out, because they either think that this is what gay people must look like, that will never be them, so they don't feel good enough to come out, or they end up with an unrealistic image of what gay people look like, and are shocked to see the reality after coming out, that most are over 40 rather than under 25, carry around an extra 50-100 pounds of fat rather than muscle, and live/work ordinary lives just like anyone else.  Either way, our ability to pursue relationships is very warped when our community remains one that (unless you are affluent enough to live in certain parts of Minneapolis) we are part of an anonymous community that doesn't acknowledge each other, and it's next to impossible to find relationships when the gay community is only interested in immediate gratification with people they have no interest in speaking to again after their encounter.

Bob Alberti
Bob Alberti

If we were going to get legalized gay marriage out of this effort I'd agree with you, but we're not. Why sell the idea of "gays want to marry for the same reasons as everyone else" when gay marriage is STILL going to be illegal after this effort is complete? Why sell Minnesotans on gay marriage when gay marriage is not what they are going to get? What they're going to get is either an embarrassing, appalling historical record of bigotry and an expensive uphill battle to get this amendment repealed, OR THE STATUS QUO. If people don't like change, then SELL THEM THE STATUS QUO. That's the key - haters are selling this as "resist change" and progressives are selling this as "change is good." THAT'S EXACTLY BACKWARDS and it's the wrong way to sell it. Sell vote no as "Maintain the status quo," and voting yes as "radical change we don't need." Also, what didn't work in California four years ago is not necessarily what won't work in Minnesota now. The attitude towards gay marriage is so much different, and the players here are so different, and the Republican party here is so comprehensively screwed up, that appealing to Minnesotans sense of pragmatism is as good a play as selling them something they're not going to get (gay marriage). "The pathetic, screwed up, broke Minnesota Republican party is wasting public time and money helping THIS outstate group and THIS wealthy Texan and THIS religious institution screw around with our Minnesota Constitution. Tell this collection of losers NO."

Bob Alberti
Bob Alberti

If we were going to get legalized gay marriage out of this effort I'd agree with you, but we're not. Why sell the idea of "gays want to marry for the same reasons as everyone else" when gay marriage is STILL going to be illegal after this effort is complete? Why sell Minnesotans on gay marriage when gay marriage is not what they are going to get? What they're going to get is either an embarrassing, appalling historical record of bigotry and an expensive uphill battle to get this amendment repealed, OR THE STATUS QUO. If people don't like change, then SELL THEM THE STATUS QUO. That's the key - haters are selling this as "resist change" and progressives are selling this as "change is good." THAT'S EXACTLY BACKWARDS and it's the wrong way to sell it. Sell vote no as "Maintain the status quo," and voting yes as "radical change we don't need." Also, what didn't work in California four years ago is not necessarily what won't work in Minnesota now. The attitude towards gay marriage is so much different, and the players here are so different, and the Republican party here is so comprehensively screwed up, that appealing to Minnesotans sense of pragmatism is as good a play as selling them something they're not going to get (gay marriage). "The pathetic, screwed up, broke Minnesota Republican party is wasting public time and money helping THIS outstate group and THIS wealthy Texan and THIS religious institution screw around with our Minnesota Constitution. Tell this collection of losers NO."

Brett Verlyn Scriver
Brett Verlyn Scriver

Bob, I agree with you that the other side's messaging and the way they frame this issue dominates our discourse in Minnesota. They want Minnesotans to think of marriage for same-sex couples as being about tax breaks, health insurance, and inheritance rights, while they think of marriage for opposite-sex couples as being about love and commitment. The message Minnesotans United for All Families is putting out there is that same-sex couples want to be married for the same reasons as other couples: love, commitment, responsibility, creating a stable family, and welcoming that person into their families. We do this by making it personal - talking about how it affects us and people we know. Arguing about the role of the constitution didn't work in California in the Prop 8 ads and probably won't work here. What the research shows is that when people go to vote, they see it as their chance to weigh in on the issue of marriage no matter what.

John Capello
John Capello

Sometimes that baseball is as big as a grapefruit and you gotta take a swing for the seats.

John Capello
John Capello

Jeffrey bad choice of words when you are talking about gay marriage ;).

Bob Alberti
Bob Alberti

The problem is that progressives have, once again as always it seems, bought into the right-wing framing and then are trying to fight their battle on the right-wing's turf. The marriage amendment ISN'T ABOUT GAY MARRIAGE. But that's how organizations like MUFA are playing it. They're selling the legalization of gay marriage, but gay marriage will STILL be illegal if this amendment fails. The REAL issues here are a) does it make any sense to amend the State Constitution when there's an existing law on the books; and b) why should Minnesota's State Constitution be used as a plaything by outstate forces seeking to increase the number of Republican voters going to the polls? But addressing THAT question requires breaking out of the right-wing frame, and doing so requires educating the public about the real issues underlying this nonsense effort.

Jason Douglas
Jason Douglas

I will not be surprised if this vote is 'recount close.'

Jeffrey A. Koenen
Jeffrey A. Koenen

Maybe people are getting sick of being polled every week? Weird and unfortunate

keny1
keny1

This is why I went back into the closet and intend to stay that way.  The gay "community" are more destructive to themselves than any Michelle Bachmann or Mitt Romney could ever hope to be.  You nailed it right on the head.  There are more pressing issues in America right now than gay marriage.  Allowing gay marriage is not going to decrease the deficit nor is it going to create jobs. 

canto040
canto040

 @keny1 That's silly. States that legalize same-sex marriage experience an economic boost.

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