Gallup poll shows gay marriage support shooting up

Sat. May 21, 2011 5:52 AM by News Staff

Washington, D.C. - The latest Gallup poll released on Friday shows a majority of Americans now support making gay marriage legal, marking the first time for such support since Gallup began tracking the issue in 2004.

"The trend toward marriage equality is undeniable -- and irreversible," Joe Solmonese, president of the gay rights group Human Rights Campaign, said in a statement.

Fifty-three percent of Americans said it's time for gay marriage to be legal, up from 44 percent in 2010.

Support increased dramatically among Democrats (from 56 to 69 percent) and independents (from 49 59 percent), while Republicans' (28 percent) feelings on the issue didn't change.

The older a person is, the less likely they are to support gay marriage. Among 18- to 34-year-olds, support is at 70 percent, but it's just 39 percent among people 55 and over.

There was a big spike in the percentage of young men who support gay marriage in the past year; 61 percent now support it, up from 48 percent in 2010.

The Gallup survey of 1,018 adults was taken May 5-8 and has a margin of error of +/- 4 percentage points.

Gallup's latest poll supports other recent national polls that for the first time show growing support for marriage equality.

In March, a Washington Post/ABC News poll showed 53 percent of Americans in support of gay marriage. A CNN poll released in April showed 51 percent support same-sex marriage.

Despite the growing trend of support for gay marriage, 29 states have adopted constitutional amendments restricting same-sex marriage.

Currently in Minnesota, conservative lawmakers - lead by Rep. Michele Bachmann - have proposed a 2012 vote on a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.

The fight over Prop 8, the constitutional amendment banning same sex-marriage, continues in California.

Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont and the District of Columbia allow same-sex marriages.