President Obama won’t be seeing any backlash in Arizona for his recent declaration of support for gay marriage. 77% of Arizona voters believe gay couples should either be allowed to marry or form civil unions. And support isn’t just limited to liberal voters—in addition to 94% support from Democrats, 63% of Republicans and 83% of independents back gay marriages or civil unions.
79% of Hispanics support either gay marriages or civil unions, putting to rest theories suggesting Obama would lose support from the mostly Catholic demographic for his new stance on gay marriage. In addition, 85% of the other racial minorities which make up about 11% of the electorate support either marriage rights or civil unions for gay couples.
This is a fairly big shift from when we last polled on the issue just last November. Then, 72% (40% for marriage equality and 32% for civil unions) supported legal rights for same-sex couples. Support is up 11 points with Democrats, 11 with Hispanics, five with independents, four with Republicans, and a whopping 21 with non-Hispanic minorities, perhaps backing up results we have found in North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Maryland showing a big boost in support from black voters after President Obama's announcement throwing his support behind same-sex marriage.
Hispanics, a demographic Obama must carry if he is to steal Arizona, are similarly skeptical of Arizona’s swing-state status at 47%. Only 32% of Obama’s key young voters (aged 18 to 29) believe Arizona will be a swing state. Wednesday, we released results showing Obama down seven to Romney, a decline from a tie in February.
As we have been doing in many states, we also asked about Arizona's biggest cities. 54% of Arizonans have a favorable opinion and 30% an unfavorable view of their capital Phoenix. This isn’t much different from the 49% favorability rating the state’s largest city received in a national poll released in mid-April. Arizonans like Tucson almost as much (50-27).
The most favorably viewed city in the state is Flagstaff, with 64% seeing it favorably and only 8% unfavorably. The least favorably viewed of the four cities we tested is Yuma (31-24).
Paul Babeu, Sheriff of Pinal County and renowned illegal immigration opponent, has a 23% favorability rating among state voters. 34% see him unfavorably, and a 44% plurality aren't sure how they feel about him. Babeu ended his bid for Congress two weeks ago after admitting an affair with another man.
Full results here