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As Shawn mentioned last week, a recent poll shows that if the election was now, 49% of South Dakotans would vote NO on the state's marriage amendment, while only 41% would vote "yes".
South Dakota isn't known for being terribly progressive. In 2004, SD voted Tom Daschle out of office, and around 70% of South Dakotans voted for Bush. Then there's the fact that our legislature passed a total ban on abortions. Peachy.
This state is known for being about as red as they come. So why did last week's poll show that 49% of us are going to vote "no" on the ban on marriage, and 47% of people will vote "no" on the abortion ban?
The answer: Enough is enough.
South Dakota's known for being uber-conservative, and as a result, many progressives leave, assuming that this state is a lost cause. Some of us, however, are apparently gluttons for punishment, and stick around.
We're finding, however, that South Dakota is far from lost. All this state needed was a few committed people to take on these wedge issues, to push back in the other direction. We've gotten the ball rolling, and people are seeing it. Granted, not everyone in South Dakota is on the same page, but we know we're sick of extremism, and the marriage amendment and the abortion ban are nothing if not extreme.
While last week's poll is exciting, the battle's not over. If we're successful this November, it'll send a message that conservatives haven't hijacked my home state.
If we can do it in South Dakota, I know it can be done in other states.