American Foundation for Equal Rights

Marriage News Blog

Marriage News Watch: Changes Ahead for Marriage Fight (Video)


More victories as a marriage bill clears hurdles in Minnesota. And there’s progress appears likely in neighboring states as well. But soon, constitutional amendments in 30 states could delay any further success for years to come.


More victories as a marriage bill clears hurdles in Minnesota. Passage appears likely this week, with marriages starting in August. And there’s progress in neighboring states as well: an impending vote in Illinois, a potential ballot measure in Ohio, and a surge in public support in Pennsylvania. By the end of this year, we could have a continuous stretch of marriage that goes from Maine to the western end of the Great Lakes.

At the American Foundation for Equal Rights, I’m Matt Baume. Welcome to Marriage News Watch for May 13, 2013.

Marriage equality is moving fast in Minnesota. By the time you watch this, the Senate may already have voted on a bill. It passed the House late last week, and passage in the Senate appears likely. From there, it goes to Governor Mark Dayton, who has pledged to sign it. If passed, marriage would start on August First. This would bring the total number of states approving the freedom to marry up to 12, an increase of three in just the last month.

There are a lot of reasons for this sudden spread of marriage from one state to the next. One of those reasons is the overwhelming support for marriage equality among young people. Seventy percent of Americans born after 1980 support the freedom to marry, according to a new Pew survey.

And Minnesota may not be the last state to pick up marriage equality this year. Governor Pat Quinn of Illinois is pushing hard for a vote on a marriage bill. It’s already passed the Senate, and needs 60 votes to pass the house. Quinn says the support is there, and the public seems to agree. A February poll showed 50 percent support for the marriage bill, with just 29 percent opposed.

Neighboring Ohio could have marriage on the ballot this year. While organizers collect signatures, the state Democratic party just began a fundraising campaign to support marriage equality.

And next door in Pennsylvania, a new Franklin and Marshall poll shows support for marriage at 54 percent to 41 percent. Support for a marriage equality constitutional amendment in PA has increased eleven points in just the last year.

And across the country in Nevada, a committee heard testimony on a marriage equality bill last week. Support for the bill is strong, with twelve hundred comments in favor and only nine hundred opposed. But it still has a long way to go. Voters will need to approve the bill, and the soonest it could appear on the ballot is 2016.

Meanwhile we’re closer than ever to resolution on the Prop 8 and DOMA cases. Subscribe here on YouTube and at for breaking news alerts and to find out how you can help support the cause of equality for all.

At the American Foundation for Equal Rights, I’m Matt Baume. We’ll see you next week.