November 8th, 2005

pokemon

Disappointed in Texas

While I'm out in California this week, I followed today's elections in Texas, and it's made me rather disappointed. In particular, I've been following the polls on Amendment Two which would establish that any marriage-like relationship in Texas was strictly reserved for pairings of one man and one woman. Overall, this amendment passed with 76% of the votes.

From looking at the county-by-county results, the highest voter turnout was in small counties that overwhelming voted for the amendment. For example, Wilbarger county up in North Texas had a 43% turnout, and voted 3200 to 500 (approx) in favor of the amendment. That's 87% for hate. I've had a lot of exposure to what the No Nonsense group has been doing, but I didn't get to see what the "right" was doing to mobilize their base, and it looks like they were able to get out a lot of the vote.

I am proud of the efforts that the progressives here in Texas made to fight this, but outside of Travis County, it looks like the anti-gay lobby was much more effective in getting their people to vote. I am proud that I live in a community that voted against the amendment, although I thought our margin of victory would be greater than 60-40.

This election does make me wonder about the future of progressives in Texas. Is this issue just too polarizing, or is this an indicator that the state is a lost cause? Was this just not interesting enough to some large group of people that would be against discrimination, but didn't consider it important enough to go vote?

I love Austin, but it sure feels like a small spot of blue in an ugly pile of red tonight.