Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Polls change on prop 8

Bloomberg.com: U.S.

By William Selway

Oct. 23 (Bloomberg) -- A California ballot measure that would halt same-sex marriages in the most-populous U.S. state is trailing among those expected to cast ballots in November, a poll found.

The proposed ban, known as Proposition 8, is opposed by 52 percent of those likely to vote, with 44 percent in favor, according to a poll by the Public Policy Institute of California. The ban is opposed by two-thirds of Democrats in a state where Senator Barack Obama holds a lead of 23 percentage points over Republican Challenger John McCain, the poll found.

``A big turnout for the top-of-the-ticket presidential race could have a significant impact on the rest of the ballot,'' Mark Baldassare, the president of the San Francisco-based research group, said in a statement.

California this year became the second state after Massachusetts to allow same-sex couples to marry, following a ruling by its Supreme Court that a 2000 ban passed by the voters violated the constitutional rights of homosexuals. Opponents of gay nuptials moved to overturn that verdict by asking state voters to amend the constitution to prohibit the practice.

The results of the Public Policy Institute poll are based on interviews with 1,186 likely voters from Oct. 12 to Oct. 19, with a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points.

To contact the reporter on this story: William Selway in San Francisco at wselway@bloomberg.net

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