On Tuesday, North Carolina voters will vote on a proposed constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriage and civil unions, and polls show it is likely to pass.
Over the weekend, a Public Policy Polling survey found that 55 percent of North Carolina voters favor the amendment (just 39 percent oppose it). This is little change from just one week ago, when the numbers were 55% in favor and 41% against.
Opponents of the amendment had an uphill battle in convincing voters that it was anything other than a referendum on gay marriage. 57% of voters in the state think gay marriage should be illegal (to only 34% who think it should be legal).
There is quite a great deal of misinformation surrounding the vote. Still only 46% of voters realize the proposal bans both gay marriage and civil unions. 53% of voters in the state support either gay marriage or civil unions. Informed voters oppose the amendment by a 61-37 margin, but pro-gay marriage advocates have had a difficult time getting the electorate up to speed.
Many NC leaders, including Democrats, Republicans, independents, lawyers, faith leaders, business executives, and celebrities, believe Amendment One is going to have untold negative consequences for North Carolina. See video here:
Whatever the fate of the bill, it has sparked massive interest in the North Carolina election. Nearly half a million people voted early in North Carolina — more than did in the 2008 presidential election.
PolicyMic will be live blogging the North Carolina primary. Polls close at 7:30pm EST. Refresh this page for live updates.
UPDATES: 9:40 PM North Carolinians have approved the amendment. The issues sparked massive interest in these elections, as nearly half a million people voted early in North Carolina — more than did in the 2008 presidential election. More analysis here. This is the last update.
9:31 PM Voter turnout: 24.73%.
9:21 PM 19 of 100 counties reporting, still 60.57% in favor.
9:04 PM Picture is looking even worse for gay marriage advocates: Now 30% reporting. 60% in favor of Amendment One, only 39% against:
8:39 PM Live numbers update: 59.04% in favor of Amendment 1, 40.96% against. Looks likely to pass.
8:20 PM Live reactions on Twitter reporting:
7:49 PM Reactions starting to come in on Twitter
Polls that showed NC leaning in favor of Amendment 1 assumed low turnout. Turnout is beating expectations. We can still beat this. Vote no.— Matt Henry (@greenideas) May 8, 2012
7:42 PM Watch as Bill Clinton urges North Carolinians to vote against Amendment One:
7:15 PM On the ground report from Stewart Boss: "As far as the mood of students awaiting election results, I think there's an understanding that the momentum is on the side of the advocates fighting for the defeat of Amendment One (especially looking at early voting turnout breaking 2008 records despite an otherwise dreary primary election) but also a general sense, partly because of polling, that the marriage amendment will probably prevail because there was not enough time or money to really educate the electorate about the fact that same-sex marriage is already illegal in NC and how the amendment will have instead legal consequences for civil unions, domestic partnerships, health care for children, domestic violence protections, etc. that most voters just aren't aware of right now."
6:15PM In March, the National Organization for Marriage was exposed for seeking to drive a wedge between African-Americans and gay rights groups in North Carolina. The state is 21 percent black.
Retiring Democratic governor Bev Perdue is also bringing voters to the polls. Perdue called Amendment One "our Rosa Parks moment" in an interview with NBC's Chuck Todd.