Poll shows support for gay marriage is way up in California

As the Supreme Court prepares to hand down a decision on Proposition 8, support fo same-sex marriage is up

Published June 10, 2013 9:34PM (EDT)

A new poll from USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times out of California finds that since voters implemented the state's ban on gay marriage known as Proposition 8 back in 2008, there's been a significant shift in attitudes about same-sex marriage across all different demographics. According to the survey, 58 percent of registered voters said they now support gay marriage, while 36 percent are against it.

"There has been movement across the board," Dave Kanevsky, the research director for the Republican polling outfit American Viewpoint, which was involved in the survey, told the Los Angeles Times. "Every group has moved" in favor of same-sex marriage, he said.

The Times reports that one of the most significant shifts has been among older voters:

Younger California voters also support gay marriage by larger margins than older voters, the poll found. Whereas 76% of voters ages 18 to 29 support legalizing the unions, only 52% of those ages 50 to 64 agree.

Still, the shifts among older voters are dramatic. Voters 65 and older are now almost evenly divided — 46% in favor, 47% against — compared with just three years ago, when seniors opposed gay marriage by 19 percentage points.

Proposition 8 was struck down by a U.S. District Court in California, and then again by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, on the grounds that it is unconstitutional under the Equal Protection Clause and the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment. The Supreme Court heard arguments on the law back in March, and is expected to hand down a ruling some time before the end of June.

By Jillian Rayfield

Jillian Rayfield is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on politics. Follow her on Twitter at @jillrayfield or email her at jrayfield@salon.com.

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California Gay Marriage Proposition 8 Same-sex Marriage Supreme Court