Marriage amendment passes with large majority
More than 80% of Tennesseans voted in favor of a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.
Tennessee law already defines marriage as the union of one man and one woman, but with the passage of the amendment, political analysts say gay marriage is not likely to ever become legal in the state.
Chris Sanders, president of the Tennessee Equality Project (TEP), said his group and the Vote No on 1 Campaign had fought a good fight, and were mourning the "introduction of discrimination into our state’s Constitution."
"Forces dedicated to deceit and hatred have misled the voters of Tennessee," Sanders said. "But they have only won the battle; the struggle goes on."
Sanders said the campaign won precincts across the state and they provide the "building blocks for victories for equality over the next ten years."
In Davidson County the "No" votes outweighed the "Yes" votes in more than ten precincts. They were: St. Bernard's Academy; Christ the King School; Belmont Heights Baptist Church; Murrell School; Centennial Park Art Activity Center; Richland Park Library; West End Fire Hall; Park Avenue School; McCabe Park Community Center; West End Middle School; Randalls Learning Center and Early Vote.
"There is no dishonor in falling short if you give your best in a worthy cause," Sanders said. "People throughout our state just like you have given us the ability to run a professional, focused, honorable campaign, and we are glad that we got the chance to fight alongside you."
Sanders praised the Vote No on 1 Campaign manager Randy Tarkington and his staff.
"All our volunteers deserve a special word of thanks," he said. "Your passion for our cause is inspiring and your dedication is humbling."
Sanders said the campaign appreciated all those who contributed to the campaign.
"We want you to know how grateful we are that you believed in us," he said.
He called upon those who have been opponents of the GLBT community to "repent of your attacks on gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people. We reach out to you as brothers and sisters and urge you to be reconciled to us and join us to create opportunity for all the people of Tennessee. "
Sanders said TEP will be bringing the message of equality to the Tennessee General Assembly in January.
"We intend to show the people of Tennessee that discrimination is wrong and that it hurts our state’s competitiveness," he said. "It is a message that we know will carry the day.
"Though we are bruised, we wake up connected to equality advocates in every part of Tennessee. We have launched a true statewide movement that will not give up until discrimination draws its last breath."
Yes 75,083 - 73.4%
No 27,248 - 26.6%
Yes 1,407,769 - 80.4%
No 342,286 - 19.6%