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October 21, 2011


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Patrick Stuart

No sports favorites? Aw, I was looking forward to them.


A very interesting survey your Hawaii one has been. I find it very interesting that Linda Lingle has a chance in the state's open Senate seat. I have a question regarding the "don't know" percentage which is usually very high in the 'legal/illegal' question and is here 11%. Yet when given the 3-way option, the "don't know" is only 1%. It would seem that the 10% in between the 2 questions have their reservations about gay marriage but aren't willing to share them?


Did you poll Aiona vs Abercrombie re-match. I think you guys are great, but you love to push the narrative that newly elected Republican Governor's would get "slaughtered" in re-matches, but either aren't showing the results, or didn't poll it (and as someone that has great faith in PPP, believe it wasn't polled). I know you polled a rematch in CT, but what about HI?

Dustin Ingalls

Sports stuff will be out next week, likely Tuesday.

Steve: I think a lot of people who are neither for nor against gay marriage in the two-way version are for civil unions, so that label makes them come off the fence--it's not called marriage, but it's some level of legal equality. You'll notice also that some people who favor marriage in the first question move instead to civil unions in the second. Those people are very much for gay rights but might not want to call it marriage either.


I wonder if PPP realizes that Hawaii has very few republicans. Most of the state is comprised of democrats.


Thanks for asking the same-sex marriage question in Hawaii. It's interesting to see where Hawaii stands on the issue today almost fifteen years after it became the first state to really confront gay marriage. I was particularly interested to see that support for full marriage falls from 49% in the "legal/illegal" question to only 40% in the "marriage/civil union/no recognition" question. Maybe it's just random variation, but most other states seem to have a smaller drop-off in support for marriage between these two questions.

On a side note, Hawaii is in an interesting situation regarding same-sex marriage because its constitutional amendment does not outright ban such marriages, but rather makes it so that only the state legislature (and not state courts) can make it legal. So there's nothing to stop the legislature from passing and the governor from signing a same-sex marriage bill. With polling numbers like these, overwhelming Democratic majorities in both state houses, and Neil Abercrombie as governor, Hawaii might be a good candidate (along with Maryland and Rhode Island) for passing gay marriage legislation in the next couple of years.


How many states have you polled on same-sex marriage already? Isn't it about time you do a summary of all of them? (i.e. where should folks target new for full marriage equality... especially based on the age of the state.)

Dustin Ingalls

"I wonder if PPP realizes that Hawaii has very few republicans. Most of the state is comprised of democrats."

Did you bother to read the full results?

"I was particularly interested to see that support for full marriage falls from 49% in the "legal/illegal" question to only 40% in the "marriage/civil union/no recognition" question. Maybe it's just random variation, but most other states seem to have a smaller drop-off in support for marriage between these two questions."

Not really. That's about the normal amount.



Thanks for another fascinating state poll. One suggestion: In any of the 6 states with gay marriage or any of the 9 states with civil unions (including HI), it would be more informative and useful to pose the question in terms of support or opposition to the current law. Responses are different when the status quo is understood to include marriage or civil unions.

PPP is better than any other polling outfit at getting honest responses on this issue. On a PPP poll, I don't expect to see a material Bradley effect.

If you look at PPP's other state polling on this, it seems pretty clear that when the electorate is undergoing a substantial shift from opposition to support, you see a subgroup stopping at the way station of civil unions. These folks would have been able to select the "illegal" response very easily back in 1998. But now, with their views in transition, they are unable or uncomfortable responding to the up-or-down question on SSM. But when given the option of civil unions, the question becomes easy and they respond in support.

Over the next 5-10 years, I would expect to see all or most of these people migrate to full SSM support. However, their current ambivalence is significant now, not only b/c it means greater support for civil unions; it also means that they are much less likely to cast a vote against a legislator who votes to upgrade HI to full SSM.

That is an excellent point. In 1998, passage of the amendment was effectively the same as an outright ban, because even a Dem-dominated state legislature was not about to ignore a vote of 70-30. However, when support is at 49% and opposition at 40%, and when 22% is the universe from which any retaliatory votes are likely to come, an overwhelmingly Dem legislature could very easily move to legalize SSM, particularly with the prospect of enhanced revenue from weddings and honeymoon vacations at stake.


I think the GOP will win HI's senate seat and 2 house seats and along with that they can bring the state into the repub's column for the prez. election.:)and im only 13!!

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