Gay Marriage May Yet Emerge as November Wedge

Muted reactions thus far obscure truths
By Jonas Oransky,  Newser Staff
Posted May 30, 2008 1:45 PM CDT
Gay Marriage May Yet Emerge as November Wedge
Domestic partners Larry Martinez, left, and Davis Osterkamp, together for 11 years, walk in the Castro District.   (AP Photo/Ron Lewis)

Despite the relatively muted national reaction to California’s approval of gay marriage, same-sex unions still matter to Americans and may yet become a wedge issue in November on par with their decisive role in 2004, Politico reports. Last time around, the controversy grew slowly after Massachusetts' legalization in 2003. If the same holds true this year, Obama stands to take a further hit among working-class whites, one analyst says.

Still, others think that the issue has dulled and that more pressing economic concerns will take pressure off of social matters. Indeed, one right-wing analyst sees “public exhaustion” with the gay marriage fight, and a pollster says the GOP is too much on the defensive to exploit it. But 28% of voters are still energized about the issue. Ultimately, McCain’s moves will determine how it plays—and advisers say they’re undecided about the next step. (More gay marriage stories.)

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