Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Polls Can Be Agenda Driven or Simply Wrong


In last week's e-mail I mentioned a poll that was widely reported across the state claiming that support for protecting marriage was slipping. While the poll shows that more Hoosiers support marriage than those who support single-gender unions, the news was that allegedly only 44% now support passage of the Marriage Protection Amendment. I mentioned two reasons why these poll results seemed fraudulent. First, I pointed out that states around Indiana like Ohio, Michigan and Kentucky all had strong majority votes in support of protecting their marriage laws with a state amendment. Second, I noted that polls often under-report the numbers of what the actual vote turns out to be. When given the privacy of the voting booth and the serious consideration of what same-sex marriage could mean to children, or the size of government and the impact upon society, the support for marriage protection climbs.

After my e-mail went out, a friend in Michigan sent me a CNN/USA Today/Gallop Poll of Michigan voters a few weeks before their marriage amendment was to take place. The poll found that 51% of voters in Michigan opposed the amendment. The headlines were, marriage amendment too close to call or majority of Michiganders oppose same-sex marriage ban. When the vote occurred, Michigan's Marriage Protection Amendment, one of the strongest and most sweeping measures in the nation, passed overwhelmingly with 59% of the vote.

All the evidence points to majority support for preserving marriage in Indiana. The problem remains in getting the leadership of the Indiana House to allow a floor vote on the issue so Hoosiers can decide if marriage means something specific or it can be twisted into whatever any fringe group may desire.

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