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Protect Maine Equality tackles Question 1

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October 5, 2009

ProtectMaineEquality building.jpg

Fairness, justice and equality for all people in Maine is what it's all about, said Mark Sullivan, spokesman for Protect Maine Equality, the official organization opposing the Question 1.

Despite all eyes being on the state of Maine and similar battles in states like Washington and California, Protect Maine Equality is focused on Maine. "We certainly welcome the attention and the support that we are getting outside of the state, it’s hugely valuable to us. But when push comes to shove, our campaign is about Maine, it’s about Maine people and its about getting our message out there and that’s what we are focused on," said Sullivan.

Phone banking and door-to-door canvassing - grassroots efforts - is definitely apparent as soon as you enter their office. Volunteers are constantly coming and going, emails are being sent, phone calls made, papers passed around - even during lunch. But the campaign, the effort to ensure marriage equality in Maine, isn't new. In fact, it's a 20-year battle. "This is at least the fourth statewide vote that we’ve had on equality issues and a lot of the issues that are being raised have been raised before and quite frankly they have been raised before and have been proven to be false and Maine people know that," he said. Recent polls, however, reveal that Mainers aren't completely convinced to vote "yes" or "no." And for that reason, Protect Maine Equality is focused on targeting unlikely voters, particularly since it is an off-year election.

Maine's long history with marriage equality is one reason that Sullivan said that they are not worried about Stand for Marriage Maine's television ad that recently caused some controversy regarding the impact on education. Mostly, "it’s a red herring being thrown out there" and a "distraction," said Sullivan. The organization also remains unshaken by the state's recent vote to investigate funds donated to Stand for Marriage Maine, which Sullivan quickly emphasized they have "nothing to do with that."

Read the full interview with Mark Sullivan here.

See also