A proposed constitutional amendment that would bar North Carolina from recognizing the unions of gay couples with marriage, civil unions and possibly domestic partnerships has lost support three months in a row.

According to a Public Policy Polling survey released on Thursday, 56 percent of voters support the amendment.

However, support has steadily declined since October, when 61 percent of voters said they would support it.

A November survey found support had dropped 2 percent. Another 1 percent was lost in December.

“The decrease in support for the amendment may reflect voters in the state becoming more aware about just how far reaching it would be,” Tom Jensen wrote in reporting the poll's results. “There are a lot of voters who are fine with civil unions but not with gay marriage who are planning right now to vote for the amendment, not realizing that it would ban civil unions too. But some of those folks are starting to move out of the 'yes' column, and getting a bunch more of them to will be the key to defeating the proposal.”

A majority (57%) of respondents support either giving gay couples full marriage (25%) or civil unions (32%). Forty percent say there should be no legal recognition of gay couples' unions.