Skip to comments.Poll: Few Favor Same-Sex Marriage (new spin,trying to say should not be part of election)
Posted on 03/16/2004 7:38:33 AM PST by longtermmemmory
(CBS) Americans continue to oppose the idea of same-sex marriage and would support a constitutional amendment to ban it. Yet most do not feel that the issue should be part of the 2004 Election campaign, or that it is important enough to warrant the effort to change the Constitution though opponents of same-sex marriage believe that it is.
In fact, opponents are much more likely to view same-sex marriage as an issue that will make a critical difference in how they vote in November, and that group currently supports George W. Bush.
A constitutional amendment that would allow marriage only between a man and a woman has the support of nearly six in ten Americans. 35% oppose such an amendment. In December 55% favored changing the Constitution to prohibit same-sex marriages.
CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT THAT WOULD ALLOW MARRIAGE ONLY BETWEEN A MAN AND A WOMAN
Now Favor 59% Oppose 35%
12/2003 Favor 55% Oppose 40%
Many people make a distinction between same-sex marriage and civil unions, which would provide same-sex couples some legal rights. Although fewer than one-fourth of Americans think gay and lesbian people should be allowed to marry, there is larger support for permitting civil unions. All in all, over half of Americans support some type of legal status for same-sex couples who wish to make a long-term commitment. 40% think same-sex couples' relationships ought to have no legal recognition.
SAME-SEX COUPLES SHOULD BE ALLOWED: To legally marry 22% To form civil unions 33% No legal recognition 40
On both these questions - opposition to same-sex marriage and support for a constitutional amendment that would ban it - Republicans and Democrats have different views. 77% of Republicans favor a constitutional ban, while Democrats are more divided on the issue, with 52% in favor and 44% opposed. Most Republicans think there ought to be no legal recognition for gay and lesbian couples, while Democrats are more likely to say either marriages or civil unions should be permitted.
56% of liberals oppose an amendment banning same-sex marriage, while 79% of conservatives favor one. Younger people are more accepting than those age 65 or older of same-sex relationships and same-sex marriage, though a majority in both age groups favor an amendment. 32% of Americans under 30 think gay and lesbian couples ought to be allowed to marry, compared to just 8% of those 65 and older.
In addition, African Americans oppose same-sex marriage and 67% of them favor the constitutional amendment.
WILL IT MATTER IN NOVEMBER?
Views on same-sex marriage may decide the candidate choice next November for 44% of voters. While 45% say they could vote for someone who disagrees with their position on that issue, almost as many 44% - say they could NOT vote for a candidate who disagreed with them. This is especially true of voters who back the constitutional amendment, most of whom would not support a candidate who did not share their view.
However, most voters would prefer this issue not be a part of the election campaign. 65% say it should play no part in the contest, and only 14% think it should have a major role. Even 58% of voters who want a constitutional amendment do not think the issue should be part of the campaign.
SHOULD SAME-SEX MARRIAGE BE PART OF ELECTION CAMPAIGN? (Registered voters) Yes, major part 14% Yes, minor part 17% No 65
The President has stated that he wants a constitutional amendment defining marriage to be only between a man and a woman, and he already has the votes of most of those on his side who say it will be a voting issue. Among voters who support a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage AND say its a voting issue to them, Bush leads Kerry 69% to 22%. Most of these voters are Republicans, so Bush support would be expected. Supporters of an amendment who say its not the determining issue in their vote favor Kerry, 49% to 41%.
African-American voters, many of whom say they are concerned about this as a voting issue, still overwhelmingly say they will vote for John Kerry.
This intensity of feeling among supporters of the constitutional amendment is clear when the question is phrased is terms of whether the issue is an important enough issue to be worth changing the Constitution. Overall, 56% think defining marriage as only between a man and a woman is not an important enough issue to warrant changing the Constitution. Yet most - 57% - who support the amendment think the issue merits a change to the Constitution.
There is no consensus about the role of government in this issue. 43% think laws regarding same-sex marriage and civil unions ought to be handled at the federal government level, and 44% think those issues are best left to state governments.
Feelings on this run contrary to traditional party ideologies: most Republicans want the matter handled by the federal government, but Democrats are more likely to prefer it be left to the states.
VIEWS ON HOMOSEXUALITY
Views on homosexuality shape views on same-sex marriage: those who believe that being gay or lesbian is a choice that one makes, rather than something a person does not choose, oppose same-sex marriage. And those on both sides of the issue are seen as fighting a larger fight about homosexuality itself, rather than just about the rights and the sanctity of marriage.
Americans divide on their view of homosexuality: 43% believe it is a choice that people make, and 41% believe it to be something that people cannot choose.
Of those who believe homosexuality is a choice, only 34% say gays and lesbians should be able to marry or form civil unions while 64% say same-sex couples should have no legal recognition. Among those who believe homosexuality is not a choice, 37% think same-sex couples ought to be permitted to marry, and another 41% think same-sex couples should be allowed to form civil unions, and just 17% say there should be no recognition at all.
Similarly, 77% of those who view homosexuality as a choice support the amendment, while those who think being homosexual is something that cannot be changed oppose it (although by a smaller margin).
Religiosity also plays a large role in how people view same-sex marriage. Three in four people who say religion is extremely important in their lives would favor a constitutional amendment prohibiting same-sex marriage, and three in five think there should be no legal recognition of same-sex relationships. But those who say religion is only somewhat or not important to them are much more accepting of same-sex marriage, and most would oppose a constitutional amendment.
VIEWS OF THE TWO SIDES
One of the most common reasons given against permitting same-sex marriage is that it will erode the status of traditional marriage. Yet few Americans think that is the real reason that people oppose it.
Asked to describe what they see as the main motivation behind those who oppose same-sex marriage, nearly three quarters of Americans on both sides of the issue -- say that opponents motivations are mainly the belief that homosexuality is wrong, not concern over its impact on marriage.
REASON MOST PEOPLE WHO OPPOSE SAME-SEX MARRIAGE DO SO? Concern about effect on traditional marriage 16% Believe homosexuality is wrong 72%
Views of the motives of supporters of same-sex marriage are more mixed. 37% think supporters back same-sex marriage because they want to see gays and lesbians receive the same legal rights that other married people have. But nearly half 48% - describe those who support same-sex marriage as striving to get society to approve of the way gays and lesbians live.
REASON MOST PEOPLE WHO FAVOR SAME-SEX MARRIAGE DO SO? To obtain legal rights for gays 37% To get society to approve of gays 482%
The opponents of same-sex marriage are more likely to view those who disagree with them as thinking of this as a general struggle for the acceptance of homosexuality and homosexuals. Among those who support same-sex marriage, 64% think they do so in order for gay and lesbian people to receive the same legal rights as heterosexuals have.
When it comes to the seriousness with which heterosexuals and homosexuals enter into long-term commitments, Americans see little difference. In fact, less than half think most couples of either group expect their arrangement to last forever.
Asked if people who get married expect their marriages to last forever, or expect to someday divorce, 47% said most people enter marriage expecting it to last forever. A different sample was asked this question of same-sex couples, and nearly the same number 44% - said those same-sex couples expected their relationships to last forever. One-quarter had no opinion.
Nearly half the public knows a gay or lesbian couple that has been together more than a year, a factor that makes a difference in support or opposition to a constitutional amendment limiting marriage. 15% say they know such couples who are raising children. But only 8% of Americans know a same-sex couple who has received some kind of legal recognition of their status.
The other interesting point, it the 482% which say homosexual marriage is to make homosexuality acceptable. Freudian slip?
For those who have not seen it:
H.J. Res. 56 and S.J. Res. 26
Marriage in the United States shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman.
Neither this Constitution or the constitution of any State, nor state or federal law,
shall be construed to require that marital status or the legal incidents thereof be conferred
upon unmarried couples or groups.
convenient how the pollsters never mention it.
This makes no sense.
Americans support a constitutional amendment, yet do not feel it is important enough to warrant changing the Constitution?
CBS reporting at its finest.
When homosexuals buy car insurance, is there a questionaire that asks what the individual does at home? Can you name whomever you want to be beneficiary of your life insurance? Is it illegal to sell homosexuals health insurance that enables them to provide benefits to another? The cost of the insurance varies from individuals, doesn't it? With or without a ban, with or without legalizing it, as long as we have free will, there will be those who freely choose to do otherwise.
Is a ban, while allowing unions, the best alternative? Anyone watch The Passion yet? What was Jesus' interactions with the Samaritan women at the well? You recall that he told her she had five husbands and that one she was with at the time wasn't her husband. She changed the subject immediately and talked about worshiping on the mountain.
Like it or not, the matter needs to be discussed.
A ban on homosexual marriage violates the First Amendment.Hunh?
And like it or not, the Bible is clear on the right or wrong of homosexuality. By legalizing marriage between homosexuals, government would be openly taking a hostile stance against the religions that believe homosexuality is wrong. But some religions believe homosexuality is okay. Yes, they do exist. A group calling itself 'Reconciling' (Methodists) among others.
Obviously then, for government to suggest homosexual marriage is okay would be an affront to those whose religion believes it to be wrong, not only because government would be taking a stand hostile to one religion, but because government would be openly endorsing the religion that believes it is okay.
In the late seventies they pleaded and whined for understanding and tolerance, that's all. Honest.
We have real serious and universal problems to address in the next few decades. Catering to perverts and coddling them is one we can do without.
Do you need the government to affirm your marriage, assuming you are, have been, or will be? Government's involvement with marriage didn't happen in 1776. People didn't ask government to endorse or deny their marriages. Marriage was between the parties involved.
BTW human sacrifice is prohibited in violation of the first amendmentment. Some cults believe in underage sex, a violation of the first amendment.
Human sacrifice? That went out with the ultimate sacrifice of Jesus' death on the cross. A war memorial cannot take the shape of a cross because of the 1st. Does that outlaw memorials in the shape of a cross? Certainly not.
Nonsense. There is no right to marriage of someone of the same gender. It is implied neither in the Constitution of the United States nor in those of any of the fifty states.
That polling for you.
If so it is the only stat thats not a whole number - doesn't make sense.
Yeah...hopefully I'll see you at the bottom of that slippery slope; if the country survives.
Thats got to be the thing I hate most about liberalism...its constantly degrades and destroys everything in its path...like a cancer; and quite honestly, theres not a damn thing we can do about it, (barring the notion that JimRob recruits about 4-5 million more true blue Freepers) there is simply not enough people who give a damn to make a difference.
So does the "it's an ancient institution" argument. Guess what? So was slavery. So is murder and torture. Next argument? Oh, you don't have anymore?
Basically, all that's left is that heterosexuals won't feel as "Special" ad they did before. Guess what? Feeeeeeeeelings don't dictate public policy, nor should they. If you want special rights, move to a commie country and make friends with the "Generalissimo". I'm sure you'd like it better there.
Thanks to our wonderful supreme court. Thank you, Justice O'Connor! God bless America!
Pray for W and The Truth
(This is probably your strongest argument.) This country was settled by people looking to exercise freely the religion of their choice. The First mandates government neutrality between religion and religion and religion and non-religion. The commandments tell us we are not to covet our neighbor's manservant or maidservant. The commandments remind us that they are from the Lord, our God, who brought the people ouf of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.
Why then, do people insist on government taking a hand in every grievance they have with their neighbor? And why do people insist that government address things better left alone? Why, in short, are people willing to allow government more control?
Congress shall make no law...prohibiting the free exercise thereof. You could perhaps argue that by banning homosexual marriage, the government is not interferring with the exercise of anyone's religion. You could not argue that an elected official could perform same-sex marriages under the canopy where commandments have been removed.
I'm not yet convinced that either a ban, or legalizing it, would be consistent with the 1st. The issue cannot be divorced from the issue of free exercise of religion.
Huh? Anyone have a clue what this means?
Sure it can. When the tide is going in a direction that the majority of Americans feel strongly against.
I disagree. Marriage, in addition to being a religious institution, is a contract before the government and confers primarily rights and obligations. Taking the religious aspect out of marriage, people can still be married before a judge, and it's legal.
My problem with homosexual marriage is spousal insurance benefits. Homosexual men have a much shorter life span than heterosexual men, and the potential for huge medical insurance claims is much higher in homosexuality than heterosexuality. What's to keep a homosexual man in good health from marrying, for money, a homosexual man with Hep C or HIV infection, giving him spousal health insurance coverage at a reduced group rate, and driving up the cost for heterosexuals without the same risk factors? Or what if BOTH of them are Hep C or HIV positive? What a nightmare for, say, a county employees health insurance rates. Subsidizing medical care for homosexuals by forcing heterosexuals to pay increased insurance costs is robbery.
Additionally, society has an interest in the welfare of children of a marriage. Raising children in an aberrant lifestyle is an unnecessary stressor on the children and possibly a health risk for them, considering the increased rates of STDs and even drug-resistant TB in homosexuals.
I have absolutely no tolerance for homosexual marriage whatsoever. Homosexual behavior is not an issue for me, because I ignore it in as far as possible. But when I must subsidize the increased health costs of the homosexual lifestyle, I become irate. Any marriage of homosexuals invariably leads to that.
Kerry's many tolerant positions on homosexual marriage are just one more reason to reject him as leader of the free world.
The Supreme Court has for decades stated that hostility toward any religion or toward all religions is as much forbidden by the Constitution as is an official establishment of religion.
Considering there are religions on both sides of the same-sex marriage issue, how can government constitutionally take any postion on it at all? At a minimum, the protections of the Free Exercise Clause pertain if the law at issue discriminates against some or all religious beliefs.
While your post suggests a compelling governmental interest, that interest cannot be expresses in terms that are consistent with the 1st amendment. Moreover, taken at face value, they violate the equal protection clause.
You argument with regard to the welfare of children has merit. The media has been confusing the abusive priests scandal by denying that priests have often abuse teenagers, focusing instead on the very young. I've posted in other forums on FR concerning the issue if you want to find them.
More Democrats and gun-owning citizens would cast a vote for Mr. Bush if they were given ready access to Mr. Kerry's position on what he would do if elected.
First of all, here's the first amendment:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
Civil marriage laws, which are the only ones I addressed in my posts, have nothing to do with religion. A man and woman can be legally married without a religious ceremony, with all the financial and legal benefits. There is no infringement on the free exercise of religion in civil marriage laws. On the other hand, a religious ceremony alone does not make a marriage according to civil law.
Homosexuals have been having their unions blessed by clergy for many years, and I have seen no interference by the state in those blessings. However, homosexuals want much more--they are not satisfied with having legal contracts to bind them and a "church" blessing. (I omit any comment concerning what I think of those "blessings.")
Instead, homosexuals want all the rights and privileges of heterosexual marriage--state sanction, church blessing, legal benefits automatically conferred by the state for married couples, including Social Security benefits, insurance benefits extended by employers, state-sanctioned right of adoption, etc.
Additionally, they don't want anyone to disagree with them, disapprove of them, tell them that according to the Judeo-Christian ethic they are sinners--they want to ban the free exercise of religion in others. It's very cunning, in my opinion. They want it established by law that no one can be prejudiced against them, even if they flout traditional Christian beliefs of the majority of churchgoers--they want religious institutions to be forced by law to accept their lifestyle with no proscription.
And any time the state tries to force me, by law, to accept homosexuality as a valid moral good, they are interfering with my free exercize of religion.
Additionally, homosexuals themselves hardly have a good opinion of heterosexuals--we are referred to by the homosexuals as "breeders," among the least of the epithets.
So, I hope you have your answer as to the first amendment question. And if homosexuals are going to tie up the courts for years at uncounted cost to the states, then by all means let's just get a constitutional amendment and stop this nonsense.
Actually, no, you didn't answer the question:How would a ban be consistent with the religious clauses of the 1st, and I'll add the 14th, though it isn't required?
I think we can agree that there are religions that believe same-sex marriage is wrong. There are also religions that say they are OK. The Methodists have split into groups on the issue. One group--the Reconciling (Methodists) believes same-sex marriage is OK.
I'll repeat myself: The Supreme Court has for decades stated that hostility toward any religion or toward all religions is as much forbidden by the Constitution as is an official establishment of religion.
You agree in part with the Court:And any time the state tries to force me, by law, to accept homosexuality as a valid moral good, they are interfering with my free exercize of religion.
For the sake of argument, though you may disagree with the Reconciling or whatever religious group that says same-sex marriage is OK, what would be your take on their position--would they believe you are interfering with their free exercize of religion if you asked gov't to ban same-sex marriages?
I think we can agree that marriage is very much a part of religions. It is also a part of culture apart from religion. Yet we have the 1st Amendment. For the majority to tell gov't to ban same-sex marriages would be for gov't to endorse the religion that is against same-sex marriages, while simultaneously gov't would be coming out against the religion that says it is OK.
Am I to understand that you believe gov't can ban same-sex marriages with that in mind?