UPDATE: Article is here. I must have edited it out somehow.
Analyzing the "why" of Prop 8's acceptance by the voters has thus far resulted in a lot of acrimony and finger-pointing, to put it mildly. Nate Silver has done some digging and, as usual, has come up with some useful data.
First off, Nate debunks the idea that Obama's 20-plus-point landslide in California in and of itself caused Prop 8's passage:
First, Prop 8's passage wasn't an "unintended consequence" of Obama's victory:
Exit polls suggest that first-time voters -- the vast majority of whom were driven to turn out by Obama (he won 83 percent [!] of their votes) -- voted against Prop 8 by a 62-38 margin. More experienced voters voted for the measure 56-44, however, providing for its passage.
And that 21-point difference between pro-Obama and anti-8 results among new voters? It was outweighed by the overall shift in the electorate:
If California's electorate had been the same as it was in 2004, Prop 8 would have passed by a wider margin.
Nate acknowledges that data on first-time African American voters is unavailable but that under-30 Latinos (Nate's best available proxy for first-timers) voted 59-41 against Prop 8.
At the end of the day, Prop 8's passage was more a generational matter than a racial one. If nobody over the age of 65 had voted, Prop 8 would have failed by a point or two. It appears that the generational splits may be larger within minority communities than among whites, although the data on this is sketchy.
Now, can we all focus on what needs to be done from here rather than on how we got here?