Gay marriage: poll says support up 17 percent in eight years


One in two Americans now support same-sex marriage, a 17 percent increase in favorability in the past eight years, according to a survey (PDF) released today by NBC and The Wall Street Journal.

Opposition to gay marriage stood at 40 percent, with 31 percent strongly opposed (about the same share as those strongly in favor: 32 percent).

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Eight US states now have legalized gay marriage and another six and the District of Columbia have recognized some form of civil union, according to Wikipedia.

However the poll also seemed to suggest general indifference among respondents when choosing candidates for political office. A quarter of those polled said they were more like to support a candidate in favor of gay marriage and 20 percent they were more like to vote for an opponent of it. But more than half, or 54 percent, said a candidate’s position on same sex marriage made no difference.

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Maryland enacted a gay marriage law on Thursday and last month, Washington state did likewise.

State Senator Ed Murray, a Democrat, was quoted as saying today in the Seattle-Post Intelligencer: “Progress is happening: The Republican Party, in what its presidential candidates are saying, is out of step with the mainstream.”

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