No Surprises in New Survey on California Prop 8 Vote

A new poll released by the Public Policy Institute of California shows, among other things, that religion was the primary thread connecting the small majority of voters who supported Proposition 8, the measure that revised California’s constitution to take civil-marriage rights away from GLBT citizens in that state. Additionally, the lower people’s income or education level, the likelier it was that they would vote Yes on 8. I know: You’re stunned.

From the LA Times:

… Proposition 8, the state ballot measure banning same-sex marriage, drew its strongest support from evangelical Christians and Republicans, while Democrats were overwhelmingly opposed.

Backers of GOP presidential nominee John McCain were much more likely to support the measure, approved by 52% of Californians, than were supporters of Democrat Barack Obama.

Perhaps the most interesting finding was a stand-alone question dealing with the issue of same-sex marriage. Of those polled, 47% were in favor, 48% were opposed and 5% were unsure. Which suggests — happily for political consultants, political reporters and other members of the political-media-industrial complex — that campaigns matter.

“The events in court, people getting married between court decisions and those kinds of events didn’t seem to matter as much as the campaign in terms of persuading enough people who were undecided or ambivalent to vote ‘yes,’ ” said Mark Baldassare, the survey director and head of the policy institute. (“Yes” amounted to a “no” vote on same-sex marriage, in the circuitous way the question was worded.)

Read the full results here.

Over at The Atlantic, Andrew Sullivan shares an interesting thought:

The trouble for the GOP is that [marriage equality] … reinforces the identity of the party as primarily that of white, less educated fundamentalist voters. I’ve no doubt there’s a place for such a party in American politics. I also have little doubt it will never be a majority.

That opinion offers some comfort.


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