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Poll: 70 percent of Britons oppose equal marriage

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  1. Paula Thomas 8 Mar 2012, 11:18am

    This is one of those polls where I’d like to read the full report together with the survey instruments. I suspect considerable diases somewhere.

    1. Are you suggesting dishonesty on the part of the bretheren? Surely not, wouldn’t that offend their beliefs?

    2. How may of them had been divorced? They are no judge of marriage if they can’t keep one.

  2. Was the question of marriage equality even asked? If they were asked to confirm their agreement with the statement ““Marriage should continue to be defined as a life-long exclusive commitment between a man and a woman.” then that’s not really a fair way of asking the question.

    I’d be interested to see a full break down.

      1. why did you post the link to a french bank website?

      2. incorrect link

      3. The above link is wrong. Here is the correct link:

        The detailed stats are available via a link on the right of the page. No information is given as to how the respondents were selected. There is no breakdown by religion, nor a statement that they were representative according to religion.

    1. September Meadows 8 Mar 2012, 11:50am

      I know right! They could have stipulated any pretext that would have forced a particular answer from respondents, such as…

      Considering the hardships on children from broken homes, the cost to society in creating support programs for single parent families, and the rising infidelity that leads to divorce, then “Marriage should continue to be defined as a life-long exclusive commitment between a man and a woman.”

      the emphasise is on ‘life-long exclusive commitment’ that promotes the answer, not ‘between a man and a woman.’

      just an example.

      1. Well-spotted. The statement actually consists of two statements – always produces distortions in opinion surveys.

  3. There you go. Some rather ambiguously worded questioning, IMHO and a) flatly contradicted by nearly all other polls b) who cares as this will go thru regardless

  4. This just makes me laugh! I’ll repost what I put of facebook:

    Big give-away here: “commissioned by Catholic Voices”. So consider: where is this money coming from for this? Were they ever going to publish anything that said differently? Who have they surveyed? How MANY have they surveyed? I believe this about as much as I believe the Loreal ads that say 99% of women love this shampoo (*out of 531 survey respondents).

    With every piece of research you must question ulterior motives. Do we honestly think they were altruistically trying to find the “true” average view of a UK citizen or a skewed statistic that supports their agenda?

    I’ll put money on this being poor research.

    1. Mumbo Jumbo 8 Mar 2012, 1:43pm

      Catholic Voices is a shadowy collective of media trained Catholic spokesmen (some members are associated with Opus Dei) originally set up specifically to counter negative media coverage of the Pope’s visit in 2010.

      As well as offering themselves up to the media for interview around carefully crafted “lines to take” they also set up numerous sock-puppet accounts to troll on internet comment boards.

      Basically, they are a bit creepy.

    2. COMRES did the poll not Catholic Voices. Funny how you shout it from the rooftops when 70% agree with you but when they don’t it’s fixed

      1. [for some reason this did not post as a reply the first time]
        It doesn’t matter who carried out the poll – in the end the money has come from Catholic Voices, and any decent research student will tell you that funding matters in: a) How the research is conducted. b) How the research is reported. and c) What “findings” are considered palatable for press release.

        If this was an undergraduate dissertation there would be serious questions, let alone a survey commissioned by a strange sub-group in Catholicism on 2000 unspecified participants.

      2. Mumbo Jumbo 8 Mar 2012, 6:02pm

        What was I saying about trolling sock-puppets?

  5. I suspect that the questionnaire itself would be biased to procide the answer that Catholic Voice wants to see rather than something accurate.

    Beside 2000 people is only a very tiny fraction of the UK population so not really indicative or country as a whole

    1. Paula Thomas 8 Mar 2012, 11:30am

      Yeah but it would be statistically significant (within 4 percentage points either way) if it was an unbiased survey with properly worded questions and proper survey methods. I strongly suspect tthe questions asked biased the result. For instance saying that that you think marriage should continue to be between a man and a woman does not mean you oppose it being between a man and a man or a woman and a woman. It simply means you want a men and a women to continue to have the chance to marry each other.

      1. Yeah, it’s not the sample size that makes this stupid, it’s the questions.

    2. Beside 2000 people is only a very tiny fraction of the UK population so not really indicative or country as a whole

      The attitudes poll from Scotland which pro-gay-marriage campaigners have been relying on was of just 1,500 people.

  6. Andy O'Malley 8 Mar 2012, 11:24am

    I’d love to know how they collected this data and what the questions were in full. It seems at odds with what i am aware of – maybe they only asked church-goers?

  7. I really don’t think their sample can have been representative, when you consider that other polls have found a majority in support of equal marriage.

    1. Jonathan Wright 8 Mar 2012, 12:04pm

      The issue isn’t with the sample size or the representation of those people, as this is a ComSec poll; its the question they asked.

      “Marriage should continue to be defined as a life-long exclusive commitment between a man and a woman?”

      For me, that reads as “Should marriage be a commitment between a man and a women where they forsake all overs until death do they part?” Exclusive in this context can be taken as monogamy, not equality, where the question focuses on the words ‘life-long exclusive commitment’, not ‘man and a woman’.

      If the question asked: “Marriage should continue to be defined as a life-long exclusive commitment between ONLY a man and a woman?” then it may be a fairer representation, but I still only like that question either and it’s too biased to commitment.

      Everything about this poll is to create a sound-bite for the #C4M – 70% against marriage equality – and unfortunately they have it. We need to spread word that their figures are a misrepresentation of the truth!

    1. Oh, and 2000 people doesn’t seem particularly representative or 70 million Britons anyway! This whole thing is a red herring – gay marriage doesn’t effect these people, so it shouldn’t matter what they think about it.

    2. CameronMGB 8 Mar 2012, 12:02pm

      Yup. Questions carefully framed and ordered to give the result the people commissioning the poll wanted. And not a word about how the 2000 respondents were chosen: ask a Catholic congregation what they think and of course you’ll get this sort of result; ask randomly chosen respondents and it will be very different regardless of the trickery in the questions.

    3. It’s seems to have been an online sample.

    4. This data sample is clearly not representative of larger public opinion,

      In this survey support for legal recognition for Civil Partnerships is 30% less than in most previous polls.

      Lies, damned lies and statistics

  8. This poll is seriously flawed by the fact it was commissioned by a catholic group. Do you not think the results could have been manipulated to support their bigotry?

    Get an independent company like Mori to do a poll. Then we might get some real answers

  9. Did anyone hear Austen Ivereigh on BBC London this morning? Ugh, made me want to vomit :( Paul Ross and Gaby Thingy gave him short shrift though.

    Hardly a surprise it’s a Christian Voices poll – Ivereigh probably made up most of the responses, weasly, snake oil salesman that he is

  10. I’ll do a pretend pole right here.

    From a survey of 100 people. Turns out 80% are Gay 15% Bisexual and 5% are straight.

    Most statistics can be completely manipulated.

  11. Who are the group polled? I smell a rat following the ‘Duty of Catholics to decry equal marriage.’ Commissioned by Catholic Voices. Also what were the questions? Polls easily dictate a preconceived result in the way they are worded.

  12. They do not blatantly ask the question “do you support the rights of gay couples to get married?” rather some long winded question which most people will take as “should men and women be allowed to marry?” and blithely say yes of course.

  13. Keith Farrell 8 Mar 2012, 11:31am

    I am sure that all this poll did was show what members of their church thought. I would discount this poll as absolute rubbish. I am sure that if I started a facebook page to do a poll of how many people in the UK thought that the catholic chruches stance on gay marrage is wrong, Im sure that 99% would agree with me. I have cathlic friends on fb who are ashamed of the messages that this church in this country are publishing

    1. Why don’t you then, Keith; I think its a good idea – and analyzing recent online opinions, 100% (of Keiths) rate the idea of a Facebook survey as totally acceptable :D

  14. Think they only asked fundamentalist Roman Catholics. Nothing to be worried of I think.

    1. Dr Robin Guthrie 8 Mar 2012, 11:44am

      The fact that it is a lead in the Daily TerrorGraph pushes it to a position of importance, however unjustified that position is.

      Already other parts of the anti-gay media are pouncing on it as some holy grail of valid opinion, which of course it is not.

      I have already had a run-in with some in the press forums citing this as a valid poll.

      1. And yet a few day ago in an article by Vincent Nichols, the telegraph asked a similar question with 4 possible choices, it’s currently running at 77% in favour of same sex marriage:

        1. Dr Robin Guthrie 8 Mar 2012, 11:56am

          Methinks the Telegraph does not know it’s readership.

          1. I wonder if the ComRes poll only asked 2,000 Catholics the questions….. ;)
            The readership of the Torygraph certainly shows some decency even if the paper itself does not.

        2. CameronMGB 8 Mar 2012, 12:06pm

          Oh is it down to 77%? When I voted in it a few days ago it was 79%, and I know it had been at 80% prior to that. Looks like a massive backlash is happening…

          1. It’s still a complete reversal of this Catholic crap poll. Even the 2009 Populus poll found 61% in favour of same sex marriage and I suspect that figure is now higher(except for amongst fundementalist types).

  15. September Meadows 8 Mar 2012, 11:35am

    They contradict themselves. They want the state to stay out of marriage and only focus on civil unions, leaving marriage for the church, but the say marriage is important for society and should be promoted by the state.

    Quite right that last bit and exactly what is happening, the state is promoting marriage — marriage equality for all, became it IS good for the state.

  16. Techiechick 8 Mar 2012, 11:39am

    ” a mother and a father” what exactly can a father give that a mother can’t or a mother give that a father can’t? these things are never defined are they? how do they think a single parent doe’s it hmm? simple they learn to adapt,there’s no reason why a father can’t teach his children to “cook” or a mother can’t teach her children to “stick up for themselves” the idea that a mother and a father are both needed to raise a child is such an old fashioned mindset,guess what catholics it’s not as simple as that families come in all shapes and sizes! and there’s not a single shread of evidence that a child raised by a same sex couple fear any worse than a child raised by a straight couple.

    1. “and there’s not a single shread of evidence that a child raised by a same sex couple fear any worse than a child raised by a straight couple.” And plenty of evidence that they do just as well or better!

    2. Nawal Husnoo 8 Mar 2012, 7:31pm

      […] It is completely fallacious, on the other hand, to make the leap of faith that parents with different genitals are essential for the child. A child needs two loving parents, who care for the child, provide love, shelter, clothing and food. It really does not matter what is in each parent’s underwear — the children are not expected to be involved with their parents genitals. […]

      [Gay Agenda, 4:16] (

  17. Jamie Taylor 8 Mar 2012, 11:42am

    It’s awkward when you look at who carried out this survey. Did the take this survey as people entered catholic mass?

  18. You may want to firmly (but oh so politely) address your concerns to the people who commissioned this poll:

    Their email, Facebook and Twitter addresses are all there on the site.

    Have fun!

  19. We could do with a new poll asking a sensible question e.g. Do you think that civil marriage should be open to same sex couples as well as heterosexual couples. Questions that don’t directly address the issue are useless for proving anything. Having said that, human rights aren’t subject to the whims of the majority.

    1. Dr Robin Guthrie 8 Mar 2012, 11:46am

      Or. “Do you think that 1 religion should be interfering in due political process, demanding legislation to suit it’s own dogma, overriding all other faiths and opinions”

  20. I’m not sure these questions have been worded impartially :

  21. Robert in S. Kensington 8 Mar 2012, 11:51am

    A poll conducted by the Cathoilic cult? Really, what would one expect? Skewed results in their favour of course.

  22. 70% of people polled oppose equal marriage. 60% of people in Great Britain are in favour of marriage equality. One word: irrelevant. People’s rights are not up for the majority vote. We have something in civilised countries called “the law”. The law is there to protect citizens. The law does not take into account the wishes of the majority when protecting the rights of the individual. That’s why gang mugging, gang rape and looting of shops during a riot are all crimes. In each of these instances the will of the majority is irrelevant. It is irrelevant, too, when discussing the right to be treated equally under the law. Let’s not get distracted by how many people may or may not be in favour of our getting equal rights. Let’s focus on what is right and just in the name of equality.

    1. Rayne Van-Dunem 8 Mar 2012, 12:33pm

      When an ideology exists within a polity to provide an ample amount of hatred to a specific group, the separation of religion and state hardly matters in that case. The ideology encourages people of various stages of precarity to demean that targeted group, building enough of an animus that anything unpleasant about individuals within that targeted group can and should be dragged up to demean and demonize them, perhaps to do repeated acts of violence and hateful protest against them. Hateful, divisive ideologies have a way of propagating themselves in a society and making it less tolerable to live in the society.

      Such a phenomenon cannot totally be affected or stymied by a body of human rights law which is impervious to majority desires. It is a mouth and brain issue, where the messages counteracting such ideologies must be spread far and wide and integrated into the society in order to defuse that hateful ideology.

      A counter-ideology of equality and liberty must prevail.

      1. Excellent comments, @Rayne. Brings the issue into perspective, and also defines the agenda the gov’t has implemented against the vulnerable and other minorities (benefit claimants, the disabled, long-term sick, etc.) in society through a campaign of lies and misinformation in the right wing press.

    2. Rayne Van-Dunem 8 Mar 2012, 12:40pm

      Furthermore, it doesn’t help to let anti-homosexual sentiment stay the “conservative, traditional, normal” argument. The framing should be reversed, where homosexuality is, in fact, one of many traditional, conservative, normal positions on sexuality.

      However that may be accomplished, it is key to the normalization of non-hetereosexuality in a society long indoctrinated by Christian institutions of ideological power with an obnoxious insistence upon the “evil” of non-heterosexuality.

    3. Exactly. Majorities deciding the fate of minorities is not democracy, it’s mob-rule. And the poll is obviously fishy anyway.

  23. GulliverUK 8 Mar 2012, 11:54am

    In the Times/Populus survey of 2009 the result was 61% in favour of equal marriage.
    The question was;

    “Q.1 Please say if you agree or disagree with each of the following statements?
    Gay couples should have an equal right to get married, not just to have civil partnerships”

  24. “Marriage should continue to be defined as a life-long exclusive commitment between a man and a woman” – Yet this isnt true anyway. Marriage is no longer “life-long” hetrosexuals can get divorced. So it shows that they have already redefined marriage once. But, I guess that was becuase it really did effect them. Allowing gay people to marry doesnt effect them in any way at all.

    1. I don’t know if that’s a regional thing but where I grew up Catholic church doesn’t recognize divorce i.e. people who are divorced can’t re-marry in a catholic church or work for the church. If I remember correctly a marriage with a non-catholic is not recognized, either, though, so if you ‘divorce’ who my old priest would’ve called a heathen or ‘otherwise surprisingly quite intelligent person’ (during mass) I assume you’d be fine.

  25. Its all a matter of the sample, if i was to do the same survey i could find the same percent of people FOR gay marrige. Its clearly baised from the start where it says ‘commissioned by Catholic Voices’

    1. No, not the sample, but the way the questions are framed. It’s really easy to ask leading questions like this to get the results you want.

  26. Stuart Neyton 8 Mar 2012, 11:59am

    “Marriage should continue to be defined as a life-long exclusive commitment between a man and a woman.”

    This is a loaded question.

    Pink News should change the headline to “Poll: 70 percent of Britons oppose divorce” because that’s also what this poll clearly shows with the words “life long”

    1. Exactly!

  27. “Marriage should continue to be defined as a life-long exclusive commitment between a man and a woman.”

    On that basis, the Telegraph or Pink News headline could be …

    70% of Britons oppose the right to get divorced

    Of course public opinion shouldn’t be the deciding factor when it comes to human rights. Proposition 8 is an excellent example, and I’d strongly recommend anyone who hasn’t watched the play to do so. Here it is ..

    1. BTW – It would be great to see this play on TV here in Britain

  28. The usual stats sample are around 2000 for a country. You can actually conclude a very significant result. However, questionnaire bias and the selection of respondents strongly affects the results. Again “Commissioned by CATHOLIC VOICES” . Need I say more?

  29. Singapore Sam 8 Mar 2012, 12:04pm

    “continue to be defined” is not neutral language, the poll is deeply flawed. This is a right wing loaded phrase as has been shown in court hearings in the USA.

    This is nothing more than a political stunt.

    Maybe the sample was also carefully chosen, since the poll was so loaded to start with.

  30. GulliverUK 8 Mar 2012, 12:04pm

    The survey seems to lack voter intention – why bother listing how many kids they have, but miss out how they normally vote. That could have been very telling. Perhaps they did the survey outside an Evangelical Alliance conference, or perhaps they got the idea of ballot-stuffing from Russia.

    Either way, that survey contradicts all the other surveys which have been done. The question is very unclear and biased.

    The results are so out-of-step with other surveys you wonder if somebody just made them up on a spreadsheet and didn’t go the fieldwork.

    Elsewhere, it looks like most of the media is building a large cross to crucify the cardinal, and collecting firewood to burn the bishops. I’ve never seen such an outpouring of loathing towards the religious bigots. I welcome it – don’t dish it out unless you can take it. There’s a lot of support from heterosexuals too, which is great to see.

  31. Why is Pink News publishing this dodgy poll? Is it against equal marriage?

    1. Dr Robin Guthrie 8 Mar 2012, 12:17pm

      To highlight its existence.

      Forewarned is forearmed

  32. Nutjobsareeverywhere 8 Mar 2012, 12:09pm

    Yea out of 2000 nut jobs survey 10 percent of who will be closets don’t agree with gay marriage

  33. catholic church is changing its strategy, by commissioning biased in terms of questions poll it tries to prove that christians are not the only ones that oppose the equal marriage

  34. Equality Network 8 Mar 2012, 12:13pm

    Of course the main question here is biased. “Marriage should continue to to be defined as a life-long exclusive commitment between a man and a woman.” That doesn’t ask about same-sex marriage; it asks whether mixed sex marriage should continue.

    The Scottish Social Attitudes Survey is a proper academic study, and asked the unbiased question “Do you agree or disagree that gay or lesbian couples should be allowed to marry?”. In 2010, 61% agreed and 19% disagreed.

  35. GulliverUK 8 Mar 2012, 12:16pm

    Just make sure you sign the petition for equal marriage.
    Currently at 21k. Their abomination is at about 115k (they started it several weeks ago, the one for equal marriage is only about a week old).

    Tweet it, facebook it, tell your friends about it, Google+ it, text it, fax it … more signatures needed, … otherwise they’ll use that petition against us two. Their one is at

  36. Singapore Sam 8 Mar 2012, 12:20pm

    This article is to the point:

    “it’s important to note how much of an impact one word can have when it comes to marriage equality.  The reason opponents of marriage equality like to use the word “redefine” is that it makes marriages between gays and lesbians seem distinct from those between heterosexual couples.  It walls off marriage behind a semantic barrier, making equal rights sound like extra rights…allowing gay and lesbian couples to marry is no more a “redefinition” of marriage than extending the vote to women was a “redefinition” of the right to vote. “

  37. Dr Robin Guthrie 8 Mar 2012, 12:20pm

    Has anyone noticed that on the “pro-same sex marriage” posts on here and given that this is an LGBT website, some of the GREEN thumbs keep going back to zero or negative figures.

    Is their some lurking trolls attempting to infiltrate the thumb polls, or am I just being paranoid?

    1. I think it’s very safe to say that we have some trolls who routinely monitor and thumb down posts. After all we got a mention the other day on BBC from a Church figure did we not?

      1. i regularly take objection to excessively aggressive commenting, there is simply no need to lower ourselves to the level of DM readership

        1. I certainly take issue with the excessive aggression on some posts as well. I don’t think for a minute that some on here don’t thumb down posts themselves, I was simply meaning that if religious figures are mentioning this site it’s safe to say there will be some marking down of figures purely to downgrade the comment itself.

  38. Then they were obviously asking the ignorant ones.

  39. Two things spring to mind – First, the application of civil law should be uniform and not subject to the capricious whims of others, especially when those others have no skin in the game (nothing is gained or lost by them by allow marriage equality). Second, the methodology is almost certainly suspect. Anyone who has a reasonable level of education knows and understands how poll numbers can be manipulated to reflect the desired outcome. So it comes as no surprise to anyone but the most ignorant that a study commissioned by the RCC returns the RCC party line.

    1. Thanks Peter. The most interesting thing about that story is, as the blogger points out, even on that question they only got 51% anti.

      Which only reinforces the impression that today’s poll is rotten to the core.

  40. 2,000 people, out of 6 million or so, most of which I’m betting are Catholic themselves (seeing as the poll was conducted by a Catholic group)… Yeah, that’s REALLY a balanced representation of the English public. I think I’ll wait until a slightly less biased source conducts a poll and let’s see how much the results differ.

  41. Catholic Voices?

    I hope there was a disclaimer at the end of the poll which stated:

    “No children were raped during the taking of this poll.’

    It was compiled by catholic priests after all so such a disclaimer would be necessary.

  42. ComRes has done some very dodgy surveys for its religious clients over the years.

    Back in November 2011, ComRes surveyed the members of the CPanel survey group, and ComRes reported the results as if they represented the views of “church-going Christians”. But CPanel is completely unrepresentative group of church-goers, dominated by members of ultra-conservative fringe denominations. For more on this, see my discussion with Tim Hopkins on that earlier PN story ( ComRes sailed close to the wind on that occasion by surveying CPanel and passing the results off as if they typified the views of “church-going Christians”

    I haven’t checked the methodology on today’s survey. But ComRes lacks the authority of some other pollsters and a statistician needs to take a look at this.

    All this illustrates the seriousness with which the Catholic church intends to interfere in civil marriage law. We should be just as serious in refuting their lies.

  43. It was an online survey – so how did ComRes/Catholic Voices advertise it? Any online survey will be subject to extreme bias

    1. An online survey of Cpanel members, perhaps?

  44. This is ridiculous. How can an online poll be considered scientific or accurate? Why is this even being reported?

    1. Hear, hear. PN should change the headline to “70% of online respondents”.

      And if we find out that the “online respondents” were actually Cpanel members, or that ComRes in some other way disproportionately recruited conservative Christians, then ComRes should be reported to the industry body (British Polling Council).

  45. Believing such a poll is like saying there are no paedophiles in the Catholic Church!

  46. Singapore Sam 8 Mar 2012, 1:20pm

    Does this loaded poll break the rules of the British Polling Council, to which ComRes belongs? Do they phrase the questions, or do their clients?

    Their poll for the C4M was similarly misleading. This should certainly be investigated.

    I always find it amazing how some supposedly religious people will go to great lengths of deceit because they think they’re fighting some kind of war against gay people.

  47. Anyone who would believe anything said by these bigots are very gullible indeed.

  48. michael, liverpool 8 Mar 2012, 1:34pm


    I think I spotted a flaw in the results of this poll???

    Under the question “Marriage should continue to be defined as a life-long
    exclusive commitment between a man and a woman”, as far as I can see the results show that more people actually DISAGREED with this statement than agreed. It says 140 agreed, 431 disagreed, 171 don’t know.

    Please check it out guys and tell me I’m not imagining things…Is something fishy going on here…

    1. Ha ha – we should definitely quote that at them…

      Unfortunately I think it’s just a typo – the 140 should read 1401…

      1. darn you are right

    2. Indeed – from what I can see you seem to be right.

      1. michael, liverpool 8 Mar 2012, 2:11pm

        haha, unbelieveable isn’t it. A typo! I think the whole poll should be discounted, this is dodgy…

      2. It’s right. The number is 1402. The 2 is wrapped in the cell so it’s reads:

  49. Funny that a poll commissioned by “Catholic Voices” produces a result that is [a] in line with the Catholic Church’s bias, and [b] in contrary to the vast majority of other polls on the subject!!!

  50. but it isn’t either lifelong or exclusive

  51. The question is “Although death or divorce may prevent it, children have the best chance in life if
    raised by their own mother
    and father in a stable,
    committed relationship”

    Of course it is not clarified whether the mother and father are in a ‘stable and committed relationship with each other’

    1. It is actually the stupidest statement in the whole thing “people think X so it conclusively proves Y”; they’re arguing because people have that opinion it confirms children have better outcomes when raised within heterosexual relationships. In fact those people are wrong, scientific study of the issue (which in my opinion is pretty much the only thing that should be considered) actually suggest there’s no real difference and it doesn’t disadvantage kids at all.
      Another thing is saying that you should take away the rights of others based on the opinions of another group (in a probably heavily biased study).
      I feel like a second class citizen most of the time; these people don’t think we should automatically have the same intrinsic rights as everyone else, we have to ask for them and then have it decided on popular opinion whether we get them or not. People starving in the world, children dying of curable diseases, is this really the most Catholic thing to dedicate time to?

      1. Dr Robin Guthrie 8 Mar 2012, 3:38pm

        All of that is a moot point anyway.

        Gays already bring up children and can adopt.

        What this is about is same sex civil marriage, so what the hell has the “won’t somebody think about the children” crap got to do with anything.

        These people are NOT Christians.

        1. If they tack that on they can say their ‘compelling’ survey proves a couple of their points and not just the one they were meant to ask about, it’s all the same fight to them; gay people harmfully redefining traditional family, downfall of society blah blah blah . These groups will almost always try the Helen Lovejoy argument as their trump card for anything.

  52. “These results are a clear warning to Government that it is at odds with the public on this issue.” Perhaps, but if so, then the Government will put it’s case to the test in the next election. What mandate, credibility or authority can the Catholic Church boast, other than it’s own beliefs and those of its adherents?

  53. It mentions on their site that they do monthly polls of the UK christian community, which makes me wonder if this is what this is with the denomination details they’d usually give missed out. Fairly typical of groups like this to try and manipulate fact rather than look at it. Is it possible for maybe Pinknews to contact them and try and get some details about who their sample was and how it was targeted?
    It was an online one which depending on how they did it makes it really easy to manipulate (maybe tell people to complete it who they know will give them what they want, and nobody else really knows about it?)
    I’m pretty suspicious anyway, it seems its more or less at the discretion of the companies client about how much info is given.

    1. Robert in S. Kensington 8 Mar 2012, 3:10pm

      I don’t think they’d tell the truth either way, just as long as they make it appear that the majority oppose marriage equality. Just because they’re “christian”, doesn’t mean they’re honest, in fact look at the lies they’re already spreading from Rowan Wiliams, Cardinal O’Brien and Lord Carey down. Sooner or later it will catch up with them, none too soon and expose them for what they really are, bigoted hypocrites.

    2. The phrasing of the question is the most deliberately obvious manipulation. The poll is fraudulent.

  54. If someone approached me and said they were from a Catholic organization and wanted to ask some questions, I’d ignore them or hang up. The people who decide to participate will be sympathetic to the cause. It’s like if I walked around saying, “Hi, I’m from a group called Queer Perspectives, can I ask you some questions?” I wouldn’t claim that my sample was totally unbiased.

  55. Dr Robin Guthrie 8 Mar 2012, 3:27pm

    Despite the lack of validity of this “poll” I see Christian Concern is running it as the blatant lie of a headline “70 per cent of the public oppose same-sex marriage”.


    1. They are pure propagandists, end of story. Their reporting of judicial decisions leaves much to be desired too.

  56. It doesn’t matter who carried out the poll – in the end the money has come from Catholic Voices, and any decent research student will tell you that funding matters in: a) How the research is conducted. b) How the research is reported. and c) What “findings” are considered palatable for press release.

    If this was an undergraduate dissertation there would be serious questions, let alone a survey commissioned by a strange sub-group in Catholicism on 2000 unspecified participants.

  57. 50-60 years ago, had you commissioned a poll asking ‘should interracial marriage be banned’ the results would prove interesting. The law should not pander to the tyranny of the majority; indeed, the law can act as a navigator for social change – it certainly has in respect of anti-discrimination legislation, which proved controversial at the time it was implemented. I predict that, if same-sex marriage is incorporated within the next couple of years, in 20 years time it will become a social norm.

  58. They didn’t mention that the poll was conducted at mass by questioning those in attendance.

    How strange that PinkNews would print this story without editorial and without noting the dubiousness of the poll.

  59. How long before the Christianists in England start a petition to become the 51st American state?

  60. Religious groups don’t really do unbiased science based research and polls though do they.

  61. The Comres website briefly explains their online polling methodology. Apparently they have two sources (1) 30 % of the sample are adults who sign up to be part of their online panel, (2) the other 70% are adults they capture online by website invitations. I guess those annoying pop ups that say would you like to participate in survey.

    So seemingly the the sampling populations are adults who have internet access, a good amount of spare time, like being asked their opinions and participating in surveys (this would count all my family members out). We don’t know what type of websites they would be visiting in which to trigger an invite.

    I can’t see how this methodology can be particularly reliable or valid. There is only a smallish sample size given the methodology. There must be limitations to extrapolation to the general populations.

    However is their a market research expert out there that can comment?

    1. This is nothing compared to the slanted phrasing of the questions.

    2. I also wonder if Catholic Voices, an online mag, invited their readers to take part?

  62. Not sure if this is relevant, but Catholic Voice (rather than Catholic Voices) is an online magazine based in Oakland, California. The Catholic Church there, along with the Mormons, is believed to fund the NOM hate group, and the notorious prop8, which has just been ruled unconstitutional.

    So is all the money coming from the same sources?

  63. “The Catholic Voice is a unique journal of traditional Roman Catholic thought in defense of the Tridentine Latin Mass, true Christian unity, unity among traditional Roman Catholics, and the traditional rites of Holy Mother Church. Each issue contains important information for Catholics concerned about the aberrant liturgical and doctrinal changes which have afflicted the Church since the end of the Second Vatican Council”

    So quite, er, conservative, among the Catholic organisations.

  64. Ben Durrant 8 Mar 2012, 5:34pm

    Out of approximately 62 million people in the Uk. 2000 is not enough to make any kind of logical conclusion for the entire country.“British people believe that gay relationships should be recognised by the state through civil partnerships.” A absurd statement based on the statistics. Not to mention it was commissioned by the “Catholic Voices”. Making it stupidly bias.

    They are only representing 0.0003% of the population and the way it was written made it seem it was representing a larger group of the Uk. The title of the article shouldn’t be “Poll: 70 percent of Britons oppose equal marriage” Its misleading.

    1. According to the description of the poll methodology the title would be more accurate if it read ” 70 percent of Britons who use the internet and visit unspecified website and have their pop up blocker deactivated and when asked agree to complete an online survey oppose equal marriage”

  65. This is from Catholic Voices website, showing that they are a professional propaganda machine. If only we also had such unity, resources and machinery! Their key issue is presumably opposing marriage equality, given the Pope’s demonising utterances on it.

    “Last year, Catholic Voices trained 20 young professionals in media skills and organised intensive briefings on key issues which cause controversy in the media. The project involved co-ordinators, speakers, experts, patrons, a chaplain, a website and blog. Taking as our model the Blessed Cardinal Newman’s desire for “an intelligent, well-instructed laity […. who…. ] understand how faith and reason stand to each other, what are the bases and principles of Catholicism…” we developed a number of methods and principles which were put into practice in more than 100 radio and television interviews before and during the papal visit.”

  66. Can we see how many polls they did before they achieved this result?

  67. The poll does not ask if gay marriage should be made legal, or even if the respondent opposes gay marriage. So the poll does not say 70 percent of Britons oppose equal marriage.
    Comres’ questions on their polls – in regard to gay marriage – seem to be written in a way in which to direct the answers to be deduced as anti-gay. I suspect that since they have ‘a wealth of specialist omnibuses including the only available survey of UK Christians’ that there are some jesus loving busy bodies in their board rooms.

  68. For irony, back to Oakland, California, home of Catholic Voice, for what they say when the polls don’t go their way:

    “Bishop Salvatore Cordileone of Oakland, Calif., chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Ad Hoc Committee for the Defense of Marriage — and the Church leader who jump-started Proposition 8, the referendum that banned same-sex “marriage” in the state — underscored the limitations of opinion research.
    “The track record shows that polling data on this issue is not all that reliable. In state after state where this has been voted on by the people, the activists have cited polling data in their favor — but they have not won an election once,” said Bishop Cordileone. ”

  69. chris lowercase 8 Mar 2012, 6:19pm

    polls are useful but they are not completely reliable. they lack so much information. with the right group of people you can have 70% for gay marriage, or even 70% who would want to make it mandatory.

    id like to think that most people are for equality. in fact if i asked the next 100 people i spoke to my poll would suggest that they are.

  70. Can we please have a proper national poll an nonbiased one please if someone could get one set up

    I don`t quite believe the results of this poll something fishy going on here

    Polls in the past for the times and telegraph have shown over 60% support for civil gay marriage

  71. I still don’t understand how the hell it affects heterosexual marriages. If you don’t like same-sex marriage, don’t get one then. I personally think that the survey wasn’t done correctly and they just surveyed religious people. If it is true, such a shame because I’ve thought about living in England, as it seems more gay friendly than the US.

  72. To add to my comment, I don’t see why those people would have an issue with me marrying another woman if I am never having children, and that’s why they don’t want to allow it

  73. GulliverUK 8 Mar 2012, 8:27pm

    Here’s a video from MSNBC – telling about Catholic attitudes.
    Very supportive.

    Also, this might be backed up by this;

    Rick Santorum Losing Catholic Vote Due To Opposition To Gay Marriage

  74. The wording of the questions is very suggestive, though it really doesn’t matter. Equal marriage isn’t (or shouldn’t be) a question of how many people do or don’t support it, it’s issue of unassailable human rights, which shouldn’t be up for negotiation and certainly shouldn’t be put to any kind of referendum. Dr Austen Ivereigh’s statement misses the point. It’s always religious people that go on about these things, of course when it’s done they probably won’t even notice a difference.

  75. Terence Weldon 8 Mar 2012, 10:19pm

    This poll is worthless. The sponsors are the same crowd that refused entry to me and two other gay Catholics to a meeting to discuss Catholic responses to gay marriage. They have given no information at all on how the poll was conducted, except that it was an on-line poll of Catholics. It is possible, even probable, that this was a self-selecting sample drawn from their own supporters.

  76. Catholic Voices have also just published this as well…


    ..”This paper, published shortly before the Government presents its onsultation on redefining marriage in order to open it to same-sex partnerships, sets forth the arguments against such a redefinition. It is designed to be read in conjunction with the poll, published on 8 March, carried out for Catholic Voices by ComRes……”

    1. Can somebody do a word count on their use of conjugal or conjugality. They’re obsessed! Why should couples not be allowed to wed purely for love? Is that such a terrible idea or something?

  77. Did they collect the poll in Catholic church after a service? If so, they only got 2000 responses?
    Publish that fact!

  78. catholic voices really i dont think so this pool is rigged. they dont want to be holding polls or been against same sex marriage they want to be looking in their churches for sex monsters the catholic preists

  79. “[C]ommissioned by Catholic Voices”

    Stopped reading there.

  80. Andrew Grant 9 Mar 2012, 12:51pm

    With the greatest of respect, despite all the talk about equality, heterosexual marriage and the (intended) gay “marriage” – have vast differences. The mechanics of sex, for example. The ability to biologically produce children is another. With these two significant differences, why get so hung up on trying to make it the same?

    In the eyes of the law, it is already an equivalent legal union. Unfortunately, one cannot change the biological/ physical aspect that comes with nature. It is not equal from that perspective. Why not leave the semantics alone in order to preserve the biological distinctions that are inherent in the different type of unions.

  81. This is stupid.

    1 ) 2000 is a small poll

    2) it all depends who you ask. This test is bias and the results say as much.

  82. Jock S. Trap 13 Mar 2012, 3:42pm

    “A ComRes poll commissioned by Catholic Voices has found that 70 percent of two thousand people agreed marriage should only be available to a man and a woman.”

    I don’t think more needs to be said. That opener says it all. Guess Catholic Voice will find plenty of people to agree with it rather than go randomly about asking the question without any prejudice.

  83. Jock S. Trap 13 Mar 2012, 3:44pm

    Shock horror. The Catholic Voice found 70% of 2000 Catholics to agree with them. Wonder how they treated the 30% who disagreed?

  84. I wonder what the religious persuasion of the sample in a study commissioned by Catholic Voices was. Hmmmm…. Would definitely like to look at the original paper, especially it’s methodology.

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