It's been eight months since Margaret Miles and Cathy ten Broeke said, "I do," becoming the first same-sex married couple in Minnesota. The moment marked a victory for equality and human dignity -- but above all, love.
Not everyone saw it that way at the time, and they still don't today. On Monday, KSTP-TV released polling conducted by SurveyUSA that shows Minnesotans remain split on the law, about one year after Gov. Mark Dayton signed it. Of those surveyed, 47 percent approved, 45 percent disapproved, and 7 percent were apparently plagued by indecision.
The vast majority of people who participated in the survey were registered voters, which has some political commentators wondering how the division will influence fall elections. For instance, Larry Jacobs, a professor at the University of Minnesota Humphrey School of Public Affairs, told the TV station, "Voters may have a verdict to make come November."
Opponents of same-sex marriage have painted the issue in starkly religious terms. Archbishop John Nienstedt, you may remember, suggested that the issue wasn't even debatable. Autumn Leva of the Minnesota Family Council provided City Pages with a statement in which she said several Republican representatives have already lost their endorsements.
She continued, "Minnesotans wanted our marriage laws left as they were, and I think elected officials will hear criticism from their constituents during their 2014 campaigns."
Maybe so. But the battle for marriage equality also had the effect of galvanizing supporters like never before. Richard Carlbom of Minnesotans United for All Families ran perhaps the largest grassroots campaign in Minnesota ever.