Alex Blaze

Washington: It's all about voter turn-out

Filed By Alex Blaze | October 08, 2009 5:30 PM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, Politics
Tags: ballot initiatives, domestic partnership, gay marriage, homophobic people, LGBT, r-71, voter turnout, Washington

This is the most explicitly religious ad I've seen in one of these anti-gay ballot initiatives, and I've seen quite a few from the past few years:

And what about people who don't believe in God? Or, as the ad says it, GOD? What about people who don't think that the Bible is America's foundational legal text? It seems they've completely given up on any mainstream votes and are just focusing on getting their base to the polls in Washington, which isn't really a bad strategy for a cash-strapped campaign.

Not to mention the fact that the ad only talks about marriage, when R-71 in Washington is explicitly not about marriage. It's about a domestic partnership bill. If these people think that the word marriage is so sacred, if they're willing to put something like Prop 8 on the ballot in California that only banned the word "marriage" but kept everything-but-the-m-word civil unions legal, then you'd think they would have the decency to talk about the issue at stake instead of just talking about marriage because they think it riles people up more.

This is 2009, an off-off-year election. Turn out is going to be low in both Washington and Maine, so whoever can get their side to vote is going to win. The most recent polling data in Washington shows the LGBT side of R-71 up 45-42. The difference is nothing when massive voter apathy is taken into account - voter turnout in the last comparable election, 2007, was 24% in Washington. The polling can show everyone even, but with that much self-selection, the results can end up pretty lopsided. Even screening for "likely voters," as Survey USA did, won't give an accurate portrait.

I went to lived in Washington for a few years and voted there in two elections. You all have a wonderful mail-in ballot system, so make sure you're getting your friends who signed up for mail-in ballots to fill them in and mail them. Take it down to the Post Office yourself if you have to. you can still volunteer to help the Approve campaign phone bank. This one is still anyone's win.

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I asked the Goddess what she thought and she let me know that 1/2 of Washington are stupid, and the other half don't know any better.

shouldn't god be paying more attention to things like the children being killed in Iraq and Afghanistan? why would s/he be so interested in a little bill in Washington that will only effect some people?

shouldn't their tax-exempt status be investigated for this ad?

and why did they choose a voice that sounds distinctly African-American to do this ad?

I don't think they have a tax-exempt status, since it's a political campaign that put it up, not a church. Although it's so hard to tell the difference nowadays.


All counties, save Pierce, now has mail-only elections. So there's no telling what "turn-out" will be, since there isn't exactly an "out" anymore. Obviously, EVERYONE needs to make sure to vote, though.

One additional note: people need to make sure that not only they are REGISTERED to vote, but that they have the correct mailing address on file. Otherwise, you won't get your ballot, and you won't be able to vote.

Also, they're desperate for contributions, which can be made at

I haven't seen the ad that you posted here on TV, so that's good news. But I don't exactly watch the kind of programs they would probably buy time on. WA. is the least religious state in the US, based on church attendance. So there's probably a very limited audience for their approach.

I'm assuming there was mail-in almost throughout the state in 2007? I don't know, since I voted in Washington in 2004 and 2006, and I got a mail-in ballot. Obviously I'm showing my lack of awareness here, since I thought it was a state-wide thing when it might have just been Walla Walla County (I'm a whittie).

And I'm glad you haven't seen the ad. That means that they're either broadcasting just on religious shows or in the eastern part of the state, or they're just putting it up in limited markets and trying to get internet attention from it.

Most of the state officially went mail in only quite recently. I think in non-King and Pierce counties around 2007. King came last year. Of course prior to this official conversion, 60-70 percent of voters had opted to vote absentee anyway so it wasn't a real noticeable change.

OK, thanks for letting me know.

No, this is the first time the mail-only election is virtually statewide. That's why part of the Approve 71 campaign is to make sure that people are double checking their addresses in preparation for it. That's the only reason I'm aware of the change. My county switched to it two or three years ago.

I believe this is the first time that King County is doing it, and as you know, it's the big enchilada.

Are you originally from central WA? How did you get to Indiana, or Paris? How's your ankle?

This ad really shocked me. It's something I would have expected in Mississippi, not Washington. If they play it anywhere near the Seattle/Tacoma metropolitan area, where everyone lives, it will have a very poor reception. Washington is one of the least religious states in the union, numbers as high as 25% nonreligious. And not many bible-beaters to compensate. It's just odd

Mormon Church owned artwork/ images in this ad. Very sad they are involved again.

My favorite part of the ad is where GOD creates man, or rather American White Man, and plunks him and American White Woman (both with great 70s hairdos) down in the Middle East!! I really hope Washingtonians can't be taken in by this hokum!