With same-sex marriage virtually assured in Washington state, opponents seeking to undo it are looking ahead to summer and fall, and to a campaign they say will draw on the resources of national organizations that have waged and won these kinds of fights.
A day after the state Senate approved same-sex marriage on a 28-21 vote and moved the bill to the House, where it's expected to pass, the Washington, D.C.-based National Organization for Marriage (NOM) said it's fully committed to repealing the measure in November.
One of the largest national funders in the fight against gay marriage, NOM also is gearing up for ballot battles in North Carolina and Minnesota, where voters this year will decide whether to ban gay marriage in their constitutions, as 29 states already have done.
In Washington state, NOM will employ strategies not unlike those it used four years ago to help roll back legislatively approved gay marriage in Maine and bring about a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage in California under Proposition 8.
"We plan to submit a referendum on this to the secretary of state before the ink is dry on the governor's signature," said Chris Plante, regional coordinator for NOM. "We've got a major constituency; faith communities across the state will carry a heavy load on this. But they're not the only ones committed to retaining the current definition of marriage."