A majority of Ohioans say they support an effort to repeal the state's ban on gay marriage.

According to a poll commissioned by The Columbus Dispatch, 54 percent of Ohioans back a proposed amendment to repeal the 2004 ban and “allow two consenting adults to marry, regardless of their gender.” Forty percent said they remain opposed.

The group FreedomOhio began last year collecting the roughly 385,000 valid signatures needed by July to qualify for this November's ballot. The group has said that it expects to meet the deadline.

The proposed amendment would allow religious institutions to decide who they will or won't marry. According to Chris Long, president of the Ohio Christian Alliance, respondents were merely acknowledging the measure's religious exemptions.

“If they would ask the question alone to reverse the 2004 question to allow same-sex marriage, I think it would be different,” Long said. “But when people understand clearly what is presented to them, I think Ohioans will again affirm their position on traditional marriage.”

Support for marriage equality has grown, Long said, because “homosexual activists have been successful in a form of indoctrination in the public schools over the past 20 years, pushing that homosexuality is an acceptable lifestyle.”