Washington State Backs Gay Marriage

Joins four-state Election Day sweep

By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff

Posted Nov 9, 2012 5:06 AM CST

(Newser) – Voters have approved same-sex marriage in Washington state after a tight vote, meaning marriage-equality advocates won all four of their Election Day battles: Maine and Maryland backed gay marriage, while Minnesota nixed a constitutional ban on such unions. Opponents conceded yesterday in Washington: "With additional results showing that we have not closed the gap, it now appears clear that Referendum 74 will be narrowly approved," says the head of one activist group. "But while we are disappointed, we are not defeated."

As of mid-afternoon yesterday, Referendum 74 was leading with 51.96% of the vote, compared to 48.04% against it. The majority of counties voted against the measure, but King County, home to Seattle, helped push it through, the Post-Intelligencer reports. Noted Gov. Christine Gregoire: "Voters stood up for what is right and what is just and said that all Washington families are equal under the law." Nine states now recognize same-sex marriage, though Washington, Maine, and Maryland are the only states where it was won via ballot measure, the AP notes.

Supporters of Referendum 74, which would uphold the state's new same-sex marriage law, cheer at a news conference Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012, in Seattle. Supporters of gay marriage in Washington state declared victory Wednesday, saying they don't see a way for their opponents to prevail as votes continue to trickle...
Supporters of Referendum 74, which would uphold the state's new same-sex marriage law, cheer at a news conference Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012, in Seattle. Supporters of gay marriage in Washington state declared...   (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
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