February 23, 2012
Contact: Megan Sanborn
(207) 441-0501

Secretary of State Summers Validates Citizen Initiative to Allow Same-sex Marriage

Initiative to Move on to Legislature

AUGUSTA, MAINE — Secretary of State Charles Summers announced today that enough valid signatures have been submitted to place “An Act To Allow Marriage Licenses for Same-sex Couples and Protect Religious Freedom” before the Maine State Legislature.

?After a thorough review, we have determined that 85,216 signatures on the petition are valid,? Summers explained. ?I commend the organizers of this effort for their success in meeting the required threshold. I also want to thank my staff in the Bureau of Corporations, Elections and Commissions for their hard work in ensuring that the integrity of the process was preserved and the statutory deadline for the determination was met.?

Election officials notified proponents of his findings this afternoon. Proponents were required to gather at least 57,277 valid signatures - 10% of the total vote for Governor cast in the last gubernatorial election preceding the filing of the petition - by January 30, 2012 as provided for in the Maine Constitution. Of the 96,137 signatures submitted, 10,921 signatures were determined to be invalid.

If the Legislature does not approve the measure without change, it will appear as a ballot question on the November 6, 2012 Referendum Election ballot, allowing Maine voters to determine its passage.

Anyone challenging the decision of the Secretary of State must file an appeal in Superior Court within ten days. Once the challenge period has passed, the Secretary of State will transmit the initiated bill to the Legislature for its consideration.