Editorial: Unsure on marriage vote?

  • Updated: November 2, 2012 - 8:46 PM

If you're among the undecided on Nov. 6, just take a pass.

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Gretchen Lechowich cheer with hundreds of other people gathered in opposition of the Marriage Amendment at the University of Minnesota Campus on Monday, October 29, 2012, in Minneapolis, Minn.

Photo: Renee Jones Schneider, Star Tribune

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After a high-profile and emotional campaign, most Minnesotans know how they'll vote on the marriage amendment Nov. 6. Nothing they read or hear now would likely change how they feel.

Instead, this plea is directed to any reader who is among the 5 percent of likely voters identified in a recent Star Tribune Minnesota Poll as being undecided.

We urge you to vote on Nov. 6, and if you make an informed choice on the marriage amendment before then, all the better. But if you remain undecided when you get to the polls, please don't cast a vote in favor of changing the state's Constitution on a whim. Just leave the question blank.

Please understand that you will in effect be voting "no," because constitutional amendments can only pass if they receive majority support from all who cast ballots. (That decision would also be consistent with the Editorial Board's opposition to the amendment.)

But if you're truly ambivalent, ask yourself if you want to make a decision this important with the flip of a coin simply because you don't like the idea of completing a partial ballot or because you haven't had time to read up on the issue.

It's important to note that if you leave this or any other choice blank, the rest of your ballot will still be valid, and your other votes will count.

Also realize that nothing will change in Minnesota if the amendment fails: Same-sex marriage will still not be legally recognized in the state. If the amendment passes, however, future generations of Minnesotans will have a more difficult time making their own choices about marriage rights.

Polls show that attitudes on the subject are evolving, which might explain why you're struggling to make a decision. Polls also indicate a close vote on Nov. 6, so current undecideds like you could determine the amendment's fate.

An estimated $18 million has been spent trying to win your support, pro or con, and if you remain undecided at this point, your uncertainty should tell you something: that you are in no way ready to impose your will on others. That's fine. Just take a pass.

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To read more marriage amendment commentaries, go here.

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