Saturday, March 8, 2014
Supporters of same-sex marriage have booked ad time totaling $917,142 in the southern Maine television market, and opponents have scheduled nearly $200,000 worth, a check with the television stations shows.
With Labor Day now firmly behind us, the airwaves will soon be featuring far more ads meant to persuade voters on the most contentious issue on the Nov. 6 ballot -- whether to allow the state to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
Weeks ago, gay marriage supporters launched ads showing parents talking about their support for gay marriage because they want their adult children to enjoy the same relationship recognition as other couples. Just today, advocates released a third spot that emphasizes that churches will not be required to perform same-sex marriages even if voters approve the ballot measure in November.
Ads played a key role three years ago when voters rejected gay marriage by a 53-47 percent margin. Opponents emphasized their concern that gay marriage would be discussed in schools and therefore bring harm to children. They were based on the successful 2008 California campaign that defined marriage as between a man and a woman in the state constitution.
Open Season targets all of Maine's political wildlife, from Portland city government to the donkeys, elephants and independents stalking the Statehouse and U.S. Capitol.
John Richardson joined the Press Herald in 1990 after working as a reporter in New Jersey. He has covered a variety of beats, including marine issues, the environment and health care. He is now covering politics and focusing on Maine's U.S. Senate race.
John can be reached at 791-6324 or firstname.lastname@example.org
On Twitter: @jrichmaine
Colin Woodard has covered politics and elections for more than two decades, from Bosnia and Bucharest to Washington, D.C., Augusta, and Portland City Hall. He has written for a wide range of national and international publications and is the author of four books, including "American Nations," a history of North America's regional cultures. He joined the Portland Press Herald at the end of April and covers political finance and lobbying, among other things.
Colin can be reached at 791-6317 or email@example.com
Susan Cover has covered Maine politics for 10 years and worked in Kansas, Ohio and Rhode Island as a reporter. This year, she is focusing on covering the same-sex marriage debate for MaineToday Media.
Susan can be reached at 621-5643 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Michael Shepherd joined MaineToday Media in May 2012 after graduating from the University of Maine in Orono, where he edited The Maine Campus, the student newspaper there. Until November he'll be writing the Truth Test, a recurring feature analyzing political statements and advertising.
Michael can be reached at 621-5632 or email@example.com