Local Politics

Poll: Most N.C. voters back marriage amendment

Posted March 31, 2009
Updated April 1, 2009

— A poll commissioned by the North Carolina Family Policy Council found that almost three-quarters of registered voters would likely support an amendment to the state constitution prohibiting gay marriage.

A Virginia-based polling firm surveyed 5,009 registered voters statewide on Feb. 26 so that the Family Policy Council could gauge support for an amendment within each legislative district. No information on the poll's margin of error was supplied.

The Family Policy Council is a non-profit group "dedicated to the preservation of the family and traditional family values", according to its Web site.

Ian Palmquist, executive director of Equality North Carolina, has a different description. "The Family Policy Council is an anti-gay organization," he said in a statement issued Thursday.

Seventy-three percent of respondents said they would likely back an amendment that defined marriage as “the union of one man and one woman,” while 17 percent said they would be unlikely to support such an amendment and 10 percent said they weren't sure of their position.

“The results confirm what previous polls have shown, which is that the overwhelming majority of North Carolinians would vote in favor of a Marriage Protection Amendment if given that chance by our lawmakers,” Bill Brooks, president of the Family Policy Council, said in a statement. “The results show that the majority of voters in every Senate district and nearly every House district support the Marriage Protection Amendment.”

Elon University released a poll last week in which North Carolina residents were evenly split on the idea of a marriage amendment. Brooks said the difference in the poll results could be attributed to how the questions in each poll were phrased.

“Our findings confirm that, when voters are asked if they support preserving the definition of marriage as one man and one woman, they overwhelmingly say yes. That’s because the Marriage Protection Amendment is not about banning anything. It is about preserving marriage in North Carolina for future generations,” he said.

Palmquist countered, "Their poll misleads voters about the proposed constitutional amendment, which is not simply a definition of marriage but an attempt to deny loving, committed same-sex couples any kind of rights, responsibilities or recognition under state law."


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  • sanc Apr 3, 2009

    I spoke with Bev and this is what she had to say about gay rights:

    “I do not support a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. As Lieutenant Governor, I have a formal policy in my office prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. As Governor, I would ensure that this policy is administered throughout state government. I do not believe that such discrimination has any justification in the workplace or anywhere else. And I believe that civil contracts between adults regarding property and other personal matters should be honored. People who are involved in a committed relationship should not be barred from making health care decisions and visiting loved ones in the hospital.”


    Meghan Brown

    Meghan Brown
    Communications Department
    Bev Perdue for Governor
    (919)832-3660 Ext. 138

    I'm so happy and proud we elected such an intelligent, wonderful, amazing person to run our state! She's truly a leader. -Sergio

  • TallWillow Apr 2, 2009

    "Where in the world do people get the idea that a marriage license is a right? ohmygosh

    From the Supreme Court, that's where. Research the "Loving" decision from around 1969-70

    "What they are really trying to do is gain acceptance of their chosen lifestyle." ohmygosh

    No, what we're trying to do is to get all the legal rights, benefits & responsibilities to be available to any 2 unrelated adults who make that commitment to each other. In spite of assertions to the contrary, most same gender couples don't have that different a "lifestyle" from most hetero couples. "Lifestyle" is just a codeword used by homophobes to demonize people they don't approve of, while pretending it's the "behavior" they dislike.

  • ambidextrous cat Apr 1, 2009

    Why is this data surprising? I have no problem with civil unions. I'm glad that the state is voting on this issue because the federal governement rarely knows when to butt out of our lives.

  • pitkan2 Apr 1, 2009

    Conservatives are for state's rights rather than having the federal government intruding into decisions that should be more local. This is one of them. Let North Carolinians vote on the issue. If a majority want it, it will pass. If you don't want to live in NC after the vote, anyone can move. That's why these decisions should be more local than federal, so people have CHOICE. Hey - any of you liberals out there pro-CHOICE????

  • Red Apr 1, 2009

    ohmygosh - "What they are really trying to do is gain acceptance of their chosen lifestyle. You can't do that with legislation." A law isn't the means, it's the ends. Whether you or anyone else likes it, America is becoming MORE progressive about attitudes towards the GLBT community. And that didn't necessarily happen because of any legislation.

  • ohmygosh Apr 1, 2009

    Where in the world do people get the idea that a marriage license is a right? It is a license just like all other the state has the power to issue. States can set whatever criterion they want for that license. For example, are you going to not allow brothers and sisters to marry?

    Those who don't qualify can live together, move or choose some other arrangement. They can arrange all the other legal protections they are seeking via a marriage license. Just do it.

    What they are really trying to do is gain acceptance of their chosen lifestyle. You can't do that with legislation.

  • whatusay Apr 1, 2009

    Let's let the citizens of NC vote on this with an open election and see the true poll results.

  • TallWillow Mar 31, 2009

    "The Bible is the... guideline by which any Christian is to live" christineswisher

    Fine; you live by it--or rather, by YOUR interpretation of it. But don't try to deny people rights based on it. What you believe/practice in your church should have no effect on mine. But you so-called "Christians" try to impose your immoral beliefs on those of us who believe differently.

    "Also, in Alabama interracial marriages are still not recognized." manofjustice

    What?!? Last time I looked, Alabama was part of the US & it's been nearly 40 years since SCOTUS defined marriage as a right not to be abridged on the basis of race.

  • doobedobedoodoo Mar 31, 2009

    patriotsrevenge,a majority of people are Christians...however, you believe in the tyranny of the minority. I know, how quaint that a majority would like to lay down a set of rules (laws) Oh, I'm sure you'll tell how we've all been suffering under the traditional notions of matrimony for eons. .......All these new "rights" you libs love to talk about....a "right" to healthcare" is next of course. What idiocy will you think of next? How about trying to get a majority to support it rather than backdoor it (ha, ha) through the courts.

  • alanrmnc Mar 31, 2009

    Didn't a recent Elon University poll say that less than half of the registered voters in North Carolina supported an amendment to outlaw same sex marriage. Change the wording in a question and get two different answers. I support any initiative to prevent members of the same sex from getting married.