Most Voters Don't Want Their Next President To Oppose Gay Marriage

With gay marriage now legalized nationwide by the Supreme Court, a new survey taken just before the decision finds that politicians who oppose marriage equality are increasingly out of step with voters.

In a poll conducted by the Democratic research firm GQRR, 55 percent of likely 2016 voters, including a majority of political independents, said they'd be less inclined to cast a vote for a presidential candidate who opposed same-sex marriage. Just 28 percent said they'd be more likely to do so. The survey was done for the Human Rights Campaign and shared with The Huffington Post.

Those who backed gay marriage also tended to feel more strongly about the issue than those who opposed it. Forty percent of voters said they'd be much less likely to support a gay marriage opponent, while just 16 percent said they'd be much more likely to do so.

The topic will probably not play a deciding role for most voters next year. Very few cite it as a top issue, and those with especially strong feelings for or against gay marriage tend to be staunch enough partisans already.

In a similar 2014 Washington Post/ABC poll that explicitly gave Americans the option to say gay marriage wouldn't make much of a difference to their midterm elections vote, 46 percent said it wouldn't matter to them. The remainder were about evenly split between more likely and less likely to vote for a supporter of same-sex marriage.

Unlike the Human Rights Campaign poll, a recent Pew Research survey found that opponents of same-sex marriage were more likely than supporters to consider the issue "very important."

Still, the new poll is just the latest in a slew of findings to show that, as support for gay marriage continues to hit new record highs, vocal opposition to the idea is increasingly a political liability. A March HuffPost/YouGov survey similarly found that voters preferred a pro-gay marriage candidate over an anti-gay marriage candidate by 8 percentage points -- and that 20 percent would flat-out refuse to vote for a gay marriage opponent, compared with the 15 percent who considered support for gay marriage a deal breaker.

The GQRR poll surveyed 950 likely voters between June 13 and 17, using live interviewers to reach both landlines and cell phones.



Gay Marriage Signs