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  [WI] Marriage amendment strategy backfires on GOP
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ContributorHomegrown Democrat 
Last EditedHomegrown Democrat  Aug 20, 2011 08:34am
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CategoryAnalysis
AuthorCary Spivak and Dan Bice
MediaNewspaper - Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
News DateThursday, November 9, 2006 02:00:00 PM UTC0:0
DescriptionIt sounded like a good idea at the time.

Get the proposed same-sex marriage constitutional amendment on the November ballot to drive up the Republican vote while driving Democrats out of office. The plan worked for President Bush two years ago, particularly in Ohio. So why wouldn't it do the same in Wisconsin this year, the GOP brass reasoned.

Welcome to the real world.

"The timing ended up backfiring," said U.S. Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner, a Menomonee Falls Republican. "I think the opposite worked out this time."

The controversial amendment easily passed Tuesday, with Wisconsin voters approving the ban by 59% to 41%.

But the measure clearly had an unintended consequence by sparking a larger-than-expected turnout, especially among left-leaning college students, who flooded their campus polling places.

The result: Dems scored some unexpected gains in the Statehouse.

"We're very happy," said Rep. Mark Pocan, an openly gay Madison Democrat, "and we definitely saw this as a product of the turnout on the college campuses."
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