A poll for the Mail on Sunday, a newspaper that is formally opposed to equal marriage has found that the majority of the public support changing the law. The poll also found that half of Conservative voters support David Cameron’s plans for gay equality.
The poll found that 60% agreed with making same-sex marriage legal. A further 21% said that they only support civil partnerships for gay couples. Only 19 % said they were opposed to any legal recognition of gay relationships.
50% of those who voted Conservative at the last general election said they supported changing the law. While 56% of those who say they will vote Conservative if there was a general election tomorrow said they support changing the law.
Damian Lyons Lowe of Survation, the polling company that conducted the research said: “The results suggest Mr Cameron’s supporters are increasingly socially liberal. If he changes his mind, traditionally minded Conservatives who have defected to UKIP and other parties may return to the fold, but others who like his more progressive approach may walk out.”
Asked the leading question ‘Do you agree marriage is a sacred between only a man and a woman’, 42% said they agreed , while 42% said they disagreed. 16% said they didn’t know.
Only 53% of voters said they agreed with Conservative MP David TC Davies when he said: “I think most parents would prefer their children not to be gay.”
58% said they agreed that the Church of England had the right to oppose equal marriage.
Interestingly 14% of those asked believed that David Cameron supports marriage for gay couples because he believes it is right. 67% said that it was because he wants to win trendy votes. Last week, in an editorial, the Daily Mail said: “The Mail unreservedly accepts that David Cameron’s brave stand on gay marriage is based on principle.
“He genuinely believes homosexuals should have the same rights as heterosexuals.”
The poll also asked voters how they would vote in a general election. Labour is ahead on 38% , with the Conservatives on 30, UKIP – the only party to oppose equal marriage is on 14% and the Lib Dems are on nine per cent.
In an editorial, the Mail on Sunday said: “The Mail on Sunday’s Survation poll on attitudes towards same-sex marriage shows a clear majority in favour of something that would have been greeted with widespread shock and dislike as recently as 25 years ago. The Prime Minister will be interested to see how little difference the issue makes to support for his party.”