MARYLAND: Activists Cheer Wording Of Marriage Equality Ballot Measure
Marylanders For Marriage Equality are thrilled at the wording and the measure's title: The Civil Marriage Protection Act.
“The wording is accurate and straightforward and will serve as another way to educate voters” said Josh Levin, campaign manager for Marylanders for Marriage Equality. “This referendum is about equality under the law and protecting religious freedom, and we know the more people know about this issue the more they support it. Voter education is what’s fueling our momentum.” The decision on wording by the Board of Elections comes as marriage equality supporters have a 14-point lead in a July Hart Research poll. Support by African-American voters, which make up nearly a quarter of Maryland’s electorate, continues to increase, as a number of surveys since March have indicated. Because ballot wording is the last piece of information taken in by voters, independent experts agree the language matters a great deal.Here is what Maryland's voters will see under the title:
Establishes that Maryland’s civil marriage laws allow gay and lesbian couples to obtain a civil marriage license, provided they are not otherwise prohibited from marrying; protects clergy from having to perform any particular marriage ceremony in violation of their religious beliefs; affirms that each religious faith has exclusive control over its own theological doctrine regarding who may marry within that faith; and provides that religious organizations and certain related entities are not required to provide goods, services, or benefits to an individual related to the celebration or promotion of marriage in violation of their religious beliefs.