A final poll of likely North Carolina voters conducted over the weekend continues to give a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage and civil unions an easy margin of victory in Tuesday’s election while the Democratic contest for governor is tightening.
The referendum holds a 16-point advantage, 55 percent in favor and 39 percent against, according to the Public Policy Polling survey, a left-leaning Raleigh-based firm. In the Democratic gubernatorial race, Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton’s 10-point lead from a week ago whittled down to a 5-point advantage in the final days. The polls showed Dalton getting about 34 percent of the vote and rival Bob Etheridge taking 29 percent. Four other candidates all received 4 percent or less. Read the full story here.
More political headlines below:
-- North Carolinians have rushed to the polls this year in record numbers, but all the interest comes with a potential twist. Many voters on Tuesday may be confused by wording of the amendment question – as well as changes caused by sweeping redistricting since the last statewide election.
--It’s the rural regions – where homemade pro-amendment signs share roadside space with mass-produced ones – that are expected to carry the amendment to passage, according to recent polls. North Carolina is the only Southern state without a marriage amendment. Read more in a Charlotte Observer dispatch from Lenior.
--Week 3 in the John Edwards trial opens: The lawyer for Rachel "Bunny" Mellon, the philanthropist whose $750,000 of checks are at the crux of the John Edwards trial, returns to the stand today in a trial entering its third week of testimony. The lawyer for Rachel "Bunny" Mellon, the philanthropist whose $750,000 of checks are at the crux of the John Edwards trial, returns to the stand today in a trial entering its third week of testimony.
--And a story we missed over the weekend: Some of those protesters planning to demonstrate in Charlotte during the big convention have decided to march under a different banner. Instead of calling themselves the “Coalition to Protest at the DNC,” they’ll call themselves the “Coalition to March on Wall Street South – Building People’s Power During the DNC.”