By Jim Davis, Get Religion.
To the surprise of few, the American public hasn’t flocked to the gay marriage side just because the Supreme Court made it the law of the land. It may surprise some that public approval of same-sex marriage has actually dropped a bit, according to a new Associated Press poll.
A bigger surprise to me: Mainstream media show little curiosity about it.
Sure, they’re reposting and reprinting the report, in varying lengths. But are they localizing reactions? Seeking explanations? Not as of this writing.
The poll results are attention-getting enough:
The Supreme Court’s ruling last month legalizing same-sex marriage nationwide has left Americans sharply divided, according to an Associated Press-GfK poll that suggests support for gay unions may be down slightly from earlier this year.
The poll also found a near-even split over whether local officials with religious objections should be required to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, with 47 percent saying that should be the case and 49 percent say they should be exempt.
Overall, if there’s a conflict, a majority of those questioned think religious liberties should win out over gay rights, according to the poll. While 39 percent said it’s more important for the government to protect gay rights, 56 percent said protection of religious liberties should take precedence.
We’ll note in passing the “frame game” wording, as tmatt calls it: religious “liberties” versus gay “rights.” But in this story, the numbers are more interesting:
According to the poll, 42 percent support same-sex marriage and 40 percent oppose it. The percentage saying they favor legal same-sex marriage in their state was down slightly from the 48 percent who said so in an April poll. In January, 44 percent were in favor.
Asked specifically about the Supreme Court ruling, 39 percent said they approve and 41 percent said they disapprove.
Respondents were also divided over business exemptions; 51 percent said businesses should not be allowed to deny service to gay couples, but 59 percent said yes for “wedding-related businesses with religious objections.” That later number compares with 52 percent in April.