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Poll: Utahans Down the Middle on Gay Marriage; ¾ Favor Civil Unions

by Norris Law Group on January 23, 2014

Utah residents are evenly split on the issue of whether same-sex marriage should be legal in the state, according to a new Salt Lake Tribune/SurveyUSA poll published on January 14, 2014.  Politico reports that if these poll results are correct, they represent a shift in opinion in traditionally conservative Utah. The Salt Lake Tribune notes that according to the poll, support for gay marriage is strongest among a younger, non-Mormon demographic.

An even greater number of respondents—75% to 25%—said that they would be in favor of same-sex civil unions and domestic partnerships.

In a 2004 Utah state election, nearly 70 percent of voters approved of the constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriages in Utah at that time. According to Politico, the results of this poll may show that 36% of Utah adults may have changed their stance on same-sex marriage over time.

A federal district judge overturned the 2004 Utah ban on gay marriage ban on Dec. 20, ruling that this law is unconstitutional. The judge also did not elect to stay the decision. But on Jan. 6, the US Supreme Court halted any new marriages between same-sex couples while the judge’s decision is under appeal. In the interim, approximately 1300 same-sex couples filed for marriage licenses in Utah.

Utah Governor Gary Herbert says that his administration will not recognize any same-sex marriages that may have taken place between December 20 and January 6. The Obama administration, however, said in a statement that the US Department of Justice would recognize them and grant federal benefits to those couples while the courts determine whether the 2004 ban was constitutional.

Politico notes that the Salt Lake Tribune/SurveyUSA survey was conducted on January 10-13, 2014 among 600 Utah adults and has a margin of error of between plus-or-minus 3.7 percentage points and plus-or-minus 4.1 percentage points.

Attorney Graham Norris and his associates at the Norris Law Group serve the residents of Utah County and throughout Utah in the area of divorce. Contact them today at 801-932-1238 or online for a free consultation.

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