There is some interesting data in the exit poll on the vote on California's Proposition 8 to ban same-sex marriage, which passed 52 to 48 percent. Whites and Asians opposed the measure by 51 to 49 percent; it was supported by blacks (70 to 30 percent) and Latinos (53 to 47 percent). Most voters over 30 supported the measure; voters under 29 opposed it by 61 to 39 percent. Supporters of same-sex marriage are reportedly challenging the measure in court, hoping that the California Supreme Court will overturn this amendment to the state Constitution as it did a similar measure that was a mere statute. But that measure in 2000 passed by a vote of 61 to 39 percent. The numbers suggest that proponents of same-sex marriage would do better to put their own ballot proposition to repeal the amendment on the ballot in two or four years. Unless the young voters change their minds on the issue, same-sex marriage will have majority support in California in a few years. Virginia Postrel, a strong opponent of the proposal, is a bit more pessimistic about the timing but thinks that bringing a court case against the amendment would provoke a backlash.
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By Michael Barone