Minnesota’s Secretary of State has announced the title for the November ballot question that would codify the state’s same-sex marriage ban–and it may be an unexpected boon for those who oppose the amendment.
St. Paul, Minn.—June 28, 2012—Secretary of State Mark Ritchie today announced that the approved title for the proposed marriage amendment that will appear on the ballot in the general election held on November 6, 2012, will be: “LIMITING THE STATUS OF MARRIAGE TO OPPOSITE SEX COUPLES.”
Minnesota Statute section 204D.15 provides that the Secretary of State “shall provide an appropriate title” for each constitutional amendment.
The governor’s veto of the legislation (Senate File 1308) invalidated the title designated by the legislature.
In terms of framing the question, this is a defiant, if small, victory from an administration that has consistently maintained the ballot initiative is derisive at a time when Minnesotans need to be banding together.
This title turns on its head the loaded language approved by the Republican-controlled Legislature in May 2011, which was the “Recognition of Marriage Solely Between One Man and One Woman.”
The difference is marked and this chosen title makes blatant the discrimination religious conservatives are asking voters to write into the constitution without having to explicitly say it at all.
A spokeswoman for Minnesotans United For All Families, the coalition of groups opposing the amendment, is quoted as saying the group believes the new name is “an accurate title.”
They caution however that “ultimately Minnesotans are going to vote on the question.”
At the time of writing, those backing the amendment have yet to issue a comment.