RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - Behind-the-scenes efforts are slowly gearing up for a referendum next May in which North Carolina voters will decide whether to engrave a ban on gay marriage into the state constitution. Pro- and anti-amendment forces are assembling campaigns that will raise money and build support for their causes.
In an era of growing acceptance of same-sex relationships in the U.S., well-funded national groups that view North Carolina as a flashpoint on the gay marriage issue are preparing to get out their checkbooks. At least one is already spending in a bid to sway the outcome May 8 in the only Southeastern state that doesn't limit marriage to a man and a woman in its constitution. The winning side may need millions of dollars.
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