For an example of a pure, spontaneous eruption of joy it’s hard to beat the moment we learned that the anti-gay marriage amendment had been defeated in Minnesota. At 1:45 the staff and board of Minnesotans United For All Families, was gathered in a conference room just across from the hall from where thousands had gathered for the main victory party taking place. We had started out with a big lead of 60%-40% early in the night but had seen that lead dwindle hour-by-hour until the “yes” and “no” votes were almost tied. Still, we’d heard that votes in Minneapolis were not yet in and that these should bring good news. So the mood was cautiously optimistic, intense, focused, and nervous.
Richard Carlbom, the campaign manager, stood up on a chair and began addressing the room of perhaps 100 staff, volunteers, and board members. They had given everything they could for months to beat the amendment. Since my phone’s battery was dead, I asked my partner to video what he said. Nobody expected what happened next. Carlbom told us how much we’d accomplished as a campaign. He said he was hopeful we’d win but that the race was still too close to call. Since we had to be out of the convention hall by 2 a.m., he said, we wouldn’t know the result for sure until morning. As he was about to close, he was interrupted by the campaign communications director, Kelly Schwinghammer, who had been busily checking her smart phone for the latest news. “Hey Richard,” she said calmly, “the AP just called it.” To see the speech and the reaction to the announcement, follow the link below (see especially beginning at about the 2:55 mark):
This is the only video that I’m aware of capturing the precise moment when we learned we’d become the first state ever to defeat an anti-SSM constitutional amendment.