gaymarriage.jpgThis morning at 10 Eastern, the Family Research Council plans to unveil the results of a poll that suggests that candidates’ support for state-based constitutional amendments banning gay marriage is a major benefit at the polls. Politico’s Mike Allen has the scoop:

PRODUCER ALERT — The Family Research Council, Washington’s leading lobby for social conservatives, will release a report at 10 a.m. on the political impact of ‘marriage protection amendments’ on the November ballot in California, Florida, and Arizona. The survey conducted by Wilson Research Strategies asks likely voters if they ‘would be more or less likely to vote for a presidential candidate’ who supports measures on the November ballot that would define marriage as the union of one man and one woman.
EXCLUSIVE — THE FINDINGS: ‘Overall, voters are more likely to support a candidate who supports statewide amendments to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman [49-29]. … Independent and older voters in particular are receptive to this position. This issue, if effectively communicated, has the potential to put Obama in a difficult position vis-à-vis his Independent and soft Democrat supporters. This is particularly true for states in the Pacific and the Deep South, where these amendments will be on the ballot. Given his perceived difficulties in shoring up his conservative base, as well as the data’s obvious strengths among Independents and soft Democrats, this position is one that should resonate with possible McCain voters.’

George W. Bush declined to support state-based marriage amendments in 2004, but he reaped political benefits from their appearances on ballots in states like Ohio because he backed an amendment to the U.S. Constitution banning same sex marriage. McCain, meanwhile, opposes a federal amendment. So his decision on how strongly to get behind a handful of state-based amendments this year will go a long way in determining how much Christian Right organizational support he can depend on.


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