A poll released Thursday shows an
increase in support for giving gay and lesbian couples the right to
marry in the Empire State.
Quinnipiac University poll found that a majority (56%) of New
Yorkers support gay marriage, an increase of five percentage points
from a June 2009 survey.
Democrats were more likely than
Republicans to support the union. Sixty-nine percent of
self-described Democrats said they supported gay marriage, while only
41 percent of Republicans agreed.
“Governor Andrew Cuomo didn't make a
big issue of same-sex marriage in his state-of-the-state speech, but
he said he was for it and so are most New Yorkers,” said Maurice
Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.
“New York state voter attitudes about
gay marriage have shifted dramatically since April 15, 2004, when
Quinnipiac University first asked about gay marriage and found voters
opposed the measure 55 to 37 percent,” Carroll added.
The survey's results prompted renewed
calls for lawmakers to legalize the union.
“Today's poll is yet another
confirmation that a strong majority of New Yorkers believe that
loving and committed same-sex couples should share in the freedom to
marry,” Evan Wolfson, executive director of Freedom to Marry, said
in a statement. “New Yorkers, like all Americans, see their gay
neighbors, co-workers, and family members and realize that their
commitment and families deserve the same fairness, the same
treatment, and the same respect under the law as everyone else's.
The Assembly has passed a freedom to marry bill three times. Governor
Cuomo has urged and promised action to end this exclusion. It is
indeed time to act. Both chambers should swiftly send a marriage
bill to the governor’s desk so that New York can move forward
together, as New Yorkers want and deserve.”
gay Senator Thomas Duane has promised to introduce a gay marriage
bill this session. Similar measures are also under consideration
in Maryland and Rhode Island.