Majority of Californians support gay marriage

08:51, April 07, 2010      

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A majority of Californians favor the idea that "same-sex couples should be allowed to become legally married in the state of California," according to a new poll released on Tuesday.

Among registered voters surveyed in the latest poll, about 52 percent said they support gay marriage.

The poll showed a sharp polarization by political party and ideology, with Democrats and liberals supporting same-sex marriage by large margins and Republicans and conservatives opposing it by equally lopsided margins.

The poll also showed a huge variation by age, with registered voters younger than 30 supporting same-sex marriage by roughly three to one, while a majority of those at age 64 and older were opposed.

That age division, also seen in every other poll on the issue, suggests that over time, the state's electorate probably will become even more supportive of same-sex marriage -- unless today's voters in their 20s become more socially conservative as they age, the Los Angeles Times said.

But the divide also poses a challenge for gay rights advocates: Older voters are substantially more likely to turn out to vote than younger voters, the paper noted.

The margin of error for the survey, which included 1,515 registered voters, was plus or minus 2.6 percentage points for the overall sample and slightly larger for smaller breakdowns.

The poll was conducted for The Los Angeles Times and the USC College of Letters, Arts and Sciences by two polling firms, the Democratic firm Greenberg Quinlan Rosner and the Republican firm American Viewpoint.



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