Ten Democrats broke party ranks to support the constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.
The amendment needed a three-fifths majority to pass, or 72 votes, meaning four Democrats made the difference. Democratic leaders expected eight members to vote with Republicans.
The Democrats: William Brisson of Dublin, Jim Crawford of Oxford, Ellmer Floyd of Fayetteville, Ken Goodman of Rockingham, Charles Graham of Lumberton, Dewey Hill of Lake Waccamaw, Frank McGuirt of Wingate, Bill Owens of Elizabeth City, Garland Pierce of Wagram and Tim Spear of Creswell.
The extra Democratic support was needed to counter Republicans who missed the vote.
Two GOP lawmakers did not vote: Glen Bradley of Youngsville and Chuck McGrady of Hendersonville. And Republican Craig Horn of Weddington had an excused absence.