Main | Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Gay Rights Bill Fails In Anchorage As Christianist Group Pulls Illegal Trick

After a repulsive and lie-filled campaign from local Christians, it appears that Proposition 5 has failed in Anchorage.
In a citywide ballot measure, voters were overwhelmingly rejecting language, known as Proposition 5, that would have added protections for people regardless of “sexual orientation or transgender identity” to the city’s civil rights laws. There was some uncertainty over the vote late Tuesday. A surprisingly strong turnout caused many polling sites to run out of ballots, raising questions about the impact of ballots filed at locations other than a voter’s intended precinct. Still, with 94 percent of the vote believed to be counted late Tuesday in Anchorage, the measure was failing 58 percent to 42, defying polls showing it would succeed.
The New York Times notes: "Opposition was led by conservative religious leaders in Alaska, including within the Catholic Church, and was financed largely by one source, the Anchorage Baptist Temple and its leader, the Rev. Jerry Prevo."

UPDATE: JMG reader Alison points out that a dirty illegal trick by the opposition may affect the final result.
A Facebook post by the "No on 5" campaign erroneously stated that unregistered voters could register on election day and have their vote counted. City code requires that a voter register 30 days prior to an election if they wish to take part, and City Clerk Gruenstein confirmed that, saying those that registered on election day will automatically have their ballots placed with other questionable ballots. Ultimately, those who registered on election day will have their votes denied. But she couldn't say how many such votes had been cast. "Will a lot of those questioned ballots be tossed because they're not registered? I can't say for certain, but it’s possible," she said. Like Honeman, the One Anchorage campaign, which backed Prop. 5, will wait for all the evidence to come in before deciding how to proceed.
"Erroneously"? Right.

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