Wednesday, May 30, 2007

New Yorkers Divided on Gay Marriage

New Yorkers Divided On Gay Marriage
by Newscenter Staff

Posted: May 29, 2007 - 7:00 pm ET

(New York City) New Yorkers are about equally divided
on whether to support same-sex marriage a poll
released Tuesday shows.

The survey, by the Research Institute at Siena College
shows that 43 percent support same-sex marriage while
47 percent are opposed. With a margin of error of
plus or minus 3.9 percentage points the two sides are
about even.

A majority of Democrats, voters under 55 years old and
Jewish voters support gay marriage the poll shows.

Republicans are most strongly opposed, although a
majority of independent voters, Catholics, Protestants
and voters 55 and older also oppose such a law.

The survey was conducted May 18-25 by telephone calls
to 620 registered New York State voters.

It is the first poll on the subject of gay marriage
since Gov. Eliot Spitzer earlier this month became the
first governor in the country to introduce same-sex
marriage legislation.

Empire State Pride Agenda, the state's larges LGBT
civil rights group questioned the poll methods and
size of the sampling.

"All the polling we've done and all the other numbers
I've seen show New Yorkers to be in favor of marriage
for same-sex couples," Pride Agenda's Joe Tarver told
"The numbers are typically close but usually are about
a flip of what Siena polling shows. Our last numbers
from 2006 showed 53% of likely voters to be in favor
of marriage equality with only 38% opposed."

State Rep. Danny O'Donnell (D) is the marriage bill's
prime sponsor in the Assembly. O'Donnell, the brother
of Rosie O'Donnell is one of four openly gay
legislators in Albany.

State Republicans are vowing the measure will never
come to a vote.

Senate Majority Leader Joseph L. Bruno (R), the most
powerful Republican in the state is vehemently opposed
to same-sex marriage. But even in the Democratically
controlled Assembly the bill is expect to have a rough

Speaker Sheldon Silver (D) has avoided taking a
position on gay marriage - saying he will leave it up
to the party caucus.

Last July the New York Court of Appeals, the state's
highest court, ruled that same-sex couples do not have
a constitutional right to marry. (story) It said that
the issue, however, could be taken up by the

Immediately after the ruling Spitzer said that he
would draft and propose legislation to legalize gay
marriage in New York State if elected governor

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