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Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and CEO Steve Ballmer support gay marriage

Each donate $100,000 to uphold Washington state's new marriage law

Microsoft Corp. co-founder Bill Gates  and the company's CEO Steve Ballmer have donated $100,000 each to the campaign to uphold the state of Washington's new gay marriage law.

The November vote will take place just nine months after gay marriage was signed into law by Gov. Christine Gregoir. She had introduced the bill a month earlier and it was passed by both houses of the state legislature.

Microsoft is one of several prominent businesses in the Pacific Northwest to publicly support for same-sex marriage. Others include Starbucks Corp. and Nike Inc.

According to the Associated Press, Washington United for Marriage had raised nearly $1.5 million as of last week in its effort to fight back the campaign to overturn the law. Meanwhile, Preserve Marriage Washington has raised more than $130,000.

According to a poll released two weeks ago, there is a strong chance voters in Washington will  uphold the gay marriage law signed into law in the state earlier this year.

Public Policy Polling surveyed 1,073 Washington voters June 14 - 17 and found that 51 percent were in favor of marriage equality, 41 percent against and 7 percent undecided.

This shows an increase in support since the last poll in February when the results were 49 percent in favor, 44 percent against. A year ago, the numbers were at 46 percent in favor, 44 percent against.

Marriage equality votes will be taking place in four US states in November including Maryland, Minnesota and Maine.

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