Conservative columnist Maggie Gallagher has credited reaction to anti-gay comments made by Duck Dynasty patriarch Phil Robertson for a recent dip in support for gay marriage.

A Pew Forum poll released Monday showed support dipping below 50 percent. Forty-nine percent of 2,002 adults said they support marriage equality, a 5 percent drop from a similar poll the organization conducted in February.

While researchers said in publishing their findings that it was too early to draw any conclusions, Gallagher, writing at the National Review Online, credited the “Carrie Effect,” a reference to former Miss California beauty queen Carrie Prejean, who in 2009 became a Christian conservative celebrity after she said she does not support giving gay couples the right to marry. Prejean withdrew a lawsuit that alleged Christian bias against pageant officials, who had stripped her of her Miss California crown, after she admitted she had filmed a secret sex tape when she was a minor, tarnishing her Christian conservative credentials.

Last year, Phil Robertson was briefly suspended from the A&E reality show Duck Dynasty after stating that gay sex is an illogical “sin.”

Noting declines in support among Catholics and White Evangelicals, Gallagher rhetorically asked: “But something happened over the last year to give traditional Christians second thoughts about what gay marriage would mean. What could that be?”

“The most likely candidate is A&E's decision to suspend Duck Dynasty patriarch Phil Robertson, after he expressed, rather colorfully, rather standard orthodox Christian views on gay sex,” wrote Gallagher, who previously led the National Organization for Marriage (NOM).

“[I]f my analysis is right, the future depends on two things: whether gay-marriage advocates continue to press the idea that supporters of the Christian and traditional understanding of marriage should be treated as bigots in the public square – and whether stories of the oppression of opponents of gay marriage 'break through' the media blockade,” she added.