Most California voters believe same-sex marriage should be kept legal, as the state awaits a Supreme Court decision to come later this month about the fate of Proposition 8, a new poll reveals.
A USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll
found support for same-sex marriage is rising, especially among older voters, with 58 percent of the 1,500 registered voters interviewed saying such unions should be legal.
The survey taken May 27-June 2 reflects a significant change in attitude since 2008, when Californians voted by a margin of 52 percent to 48 percent to enact Proposition 8, which banned gay marriage. The latest poll found that only 36 percent of Californians still oppose same-sex marriage, which coincides with numbers contained in nationwide surveys.
The poll also found that there had been movement across all age groups in support of the unions since the ban in 2008. It also revealed that more women than men — 63 percent to 52 percent — favor legalizing same-sex marriage.
As expected, younger Californians were more likely to say they support gay marriage, with 76 percent of voters between the ages of 18 to 29 agreeing, compared to 52 percent of those 50-64. But voters older than 65 were nearly evenly divided on the issue, as compared to a survey three years ago when more seniors opposed gay marriage than supported it by a margin of 19 percentage points.
In terms of regions, support was found to be the strongest in the San Francisco Bay Area, with 69 percent in favor. The Sacramento, Northern California, and the Central Coast regions also came in strong with 59 percent support, while Los Angeles County registered 58 percent support, and Southern California had 52 percent support.
In addition, the survey revealed that most of the state's Catholics, by a 51 to 44 percent margin, agree with legalizing same-sex marriage, even though the church does not approve.
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