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Pro Gay Marriage Stand Could Help The Party, NH Dems Say

Patch's 'Blue Granite' poll shows some Democrats aren't so enthused about it.

Two-thirds of New Hampshire Democrats think this week's decision to include a pro gay marriage plank in the Democratic National Convention's platform will have an impact on this year's election: that's the main finding of this week's Blue Granite survey of influential New Hampshire Democrats.

In all, 71 Democrats from New Hampshire were asked using an automated survey tool whether they think adding a pro gay marriage plank to the party platform will help the Democrats in the 2012 election.

Twenty-six responses were collected.

Sixty-six percent of those who responded to the survey said they either completely agree (19 percent) or somewhat agree (46 percent) that the pro gay marriage plank will help Democrats in this year's election. Thirty-one percent were neutral, 4 percent somewhat disagreed, and none completely disagreed.

"The majority of Americans agree with marriage equality," said one Democrat who completely agreed that the pro gay marriage plank will help the party.

"It is the right thing to do," said another. "And anyone who would fail to vote for us for this alone is probably not voting for us anyway."

Others said the decision will motivate the gay community.

"The gay community is vocal, active and in a position to raise money for the campaign. They will do more when represented than when their candidate is apathetic."

Still, some Democrats feel the move won't help at all.

"Will probably lose some of the moderate GOP vote," said one.

"It's a mixed bag," said another influential Democrat. "It helps with some donors, and energizes voters in some states. It might also hurt in some states... Ultimately I very much doubt it will sway the outcome much."

We also asked our Democratic influentials this week what other issue they think should be added to the party platform for the convention, and received some interesting responses.

Health care and gun reform received several votes, as did education and employment.

"Protection of women's rights," said one Democrat.

"Strong support for worker and union rights," said another.

One Democrat had a more general response: "Anything pro middle class."

The Blue Granite Survey

Our surveys are not a scientific random sample of any larger population but rather an effort to listen to a swath of influential local Democratic activists, party leaders and elected officials in New Hampshire. All of these individuals have agreed to participate in the surveys, although not all responded to this week's questions. Surveys were conducted between July 30 and Aug. 2, 2012.

Patch will be conducting Blue Granite and Red Granite surveys throughout 2012 in hopes of determining the true sentiment of Democrats and Republicans on the ground in New Hampshire. If you are an activist, party leader or elected official and would like to take part in a weekly survey that lasts just a few minutes, please email Regional Editor Marc Fortier at marc.fortier@patch.com.

Blue Granite Roster: Larry Drake (Portsmouth Democratic Committee chairman), Joan Jacobs (Portsmouth Democratic Committee member), Joanne Dowdell (Former 1st District Congressional candidate), Matthew Hancock (Former 1st District Congressional candidate), Terie Norelli (House Democratic Leader), Paul McEachern (Attorney), Tom Ferrini (Former Portsmouth Mayor), Josh Denton (Iraq War veteran), Laura Pantelakos (State Rep), Jacqueline Cali-Pitts (State Rep), Jim Splaine (Former State Rep), Robin Read (State Rep), Bev Hollingworth (State Senate candidate), Chris Muns (Hampton Democrats chairman/State Rep candidate), Mike Edgar (State Rep candidate), Dick Desrosiers (State Rep candidate), Julie Gilman (Exeter Selectman), Bob Prior (Exeter Democratic Party chairman), Jeff Ballard (State Rep candidate), Dan Chartrand (Exeter Selectman), Arnie Arnesen (radio talk show host), Dick Patten (State Rep/Concord City Councilor), Katherine Rogers (Attorney/former State Rep), Rick Watrous (State Rep), Shannon Barnes (Merrimack Democrats Vice Chair), Jo Ann Rotast (State Rep candidate), Kim Kojak (Merrimack Democratic Town Committee chair/State Rep candidate), Evan Fulmer (State Rep candidate), John Grady (State Rep candidate), Brenda Grady (State Rep candidate), Anne McCann (Merrimack Democratic Town Committee member), Jane Lang (Salem activist), Larry Weil (Salem activist), Stephanie Micklon (Former State Rep), Bill Klessens (Salem activist), Laurel Redden (Former Salem Town Democratic chair), Beckie Fee (State Rep candidate), Kevin Hodges (Former State Rep), Lee Nyquist (State Senate candidate), Jerry Hanauer (Bedford Democratic Party chairman/State Rep candidate), Suzanne Dupont (OFA-NH volunteer), Theodore Groh (NH Young Democrats member), Jack Conaway (Amherst Democrats member), Graham Smith (Amherst Democrats chairman), Shannon Chandley (Amherst Democrats vice chair), Dick Danzinger (Amherst Democrats treasurer), Jens Rieckmann (Amherst Democrats secretary), Ray Iannuzzelli (Amherst Democrats member), Sylvia Gale (State Rep candidate), Sonia Prince (Nashua Democratic City Committee member), David Victory (Nashua Democratic City Committee member), David Campbell (State Rep), Ken Gidge (State Rep), David Tencza (Nashua Democratic City Committee chairman), Jan Schmidt (State Rep candidate), Cindy Rosenwald (State Rep), Bette Lasky (Radio host), Peg Gilmour (Radio host) Deirdre Reynolds (Nashua Democratic City Committee member), Neelima Gogumalla (Windham Democrats member), Ross McLeod (Windham Selectman), Kristi St. Laurent (Windham Democrats chair/State Rep candidate), Valerie Roman (Windham Democrats member), Tony Keevan (State Rep candidate), Michael Caruso (Windham Democrats member), Jesse Steele (Windham Democrats member), Carolyn Webber (Windham Democrats member), Tracey Mulder (Windham Democrats member), Bill Duncan (New Castle Democrats Chairman/Executive Council candidate), Dave Lang (Professional Fire Fighters of NH), Bill Kennedy (Gubernatorial candidate), Mark Fernald (Former State Senator).

Dennis Taylor August 04, 2012 at 07:20 PM
Jan: I tell my kids that unrepentant sinners go to Hell. I tell them that I do not like the universe being set up that way, but that is what the Bible says. I also tell them that homosexuality is a sin. Thus, unrepentant homosexuals go to Hell. If I truly believe this, it would be unloving for me not to tell my kids. If I did not believe this, I would tell them that. I have no hatred for other sinners, being one myself. You apparently have no problem stating that my telling my kids what I perceive to be the truth is hateful. Where is your tolerance for my right to express my beliefs here on The Patch, at home, or anywhere else I please?
Dennis Taylor August 04, 2012 at 07:27 PM
Marriage is only a sacred agreement between a man, woman, and God. Our society has created civil marriage in order to promote social well being. If we are going to have marriage defined as any bond between two people who "love" one another, who is to define what level of love is necessary? My kids should be able to union with one another, or with their neighbors, or friends. Similarly, since "love" is the key, I should be free to union with any living thing, including my cat. That the state should license marriages and waste its resources providing divorce courts seems wrong to me. The state cannot make a man and a woman married under God. It certainly cannot do that for homosexuals. The state needs to get out of the business of marriage and the role of favoring married couples over singles. If it will not, then, anything goes, and I want free health care for my cat. There is nothing sacred nor special about two men wanting to get married because they claim to love each other. The state has no business giving these men a marriage license. However, if the state insists on getting involved in the love relationships of its citizens, it must either allow all who wish to union do so--I assume that the need for sexual relations is not a requirement for access to the special tax, inheritance, and insurance benefits--or get out of it entirely. I would prefer that the state no longer define marriage or provide the legal means for it.
Beachguy August 05, 2012 at 12:20 PM
This comment is not for or against the issue but rather drawing conclusions based on 26 responses in no a solid statistical practice. You need to have a larger amount of people questioned before you can make any coclusions. I hope Blue NH improves its practices so that we can get a better read on any issue.
Fritz August 05, 2012 at 11:42 PM
I don't care about your "traditions and religious teachings", they are yours to keep. I for one, don't believe in an imaginary man in the sky, I believe in everyones right to their own lives and happiness. You don't get to impose your "traditions and religious teachings" on the rest of us. Your opinion - that marriage is between a man and a woman..... is just that, your opinion.
Hilltopper August 06, 2012 at 01:33 PM
Fitz, You may not believe in an imaginary man in the sky, but that imaginary man in the sky believes in you

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