PublicationsSeptember 6, 2007

Clinton and Giuliani Seen as Not Highly Religious; Romney’s Religion Raises Concerns

Summary of Findings So far religion is not proving to be a clear-cut positive in the 2008 presidential campaign. The candidates viewed by voters as the least religious among the leading contenders are the current frontrunners for the Democratic and Republican nominations — Hillary Clinton and Rudy Giuliani, respectively. On the other hand, the candidate […]

CommentaryMay 23, 2007

Four-in-Ten Americans Have Close Friends or Relatives Who are Gay

In the past four decades, growing numbers of gays have come out of the closet and into the mainstream of American life. As a consequence, 4-in-10 Americans now report that some of their close friends or family members are gays or lesbians. Read full analysis at

PublicationsAugust 3, 2006

Pragmatic Americans Liberal and Conservative on Social Issues

Summary of Findings Americans cannot be easily characterized as conservative or liberal on today’s most pressing social questions. The public’s point of view varies from issue to issue. They are conservative in opposing gay marriage and gay adoption, liberal in favoring embryonic stem cell research and a little of both on abortion. Along with favoring […]

PublicationsJune 27, 2006

Democrats More Eager to Vote, But Unhappy with Party

Summary of Findings With less than five months to go before Election Day, Democrats hold two distinct advantages in the midterm campaign that they have not enjoyed for some time. First, Americans continue to say they favor the Democratic candidate in their district, by a 51% to 39% margin. Second, the level of enthusiasm about […]

PublicationsMarch 22, 2006

Less Opposition to Gay Marriage, Adoption and Military Service

Summary of Findings Public acceptance of homosexuality has increased in a number of ways in recent years, though it remains a deeply divisive issue. Half of Americans (51%) continue to oppose legalizing gay marriage, but this number has declined significantly from 63% in February 2004, when opposition spiked following the Massachusetts Supreme Court decision and […]

PublicationsAugust 3, 2005

Abortion and Rights of Terror Suspects Top Court Issues

Summary of Findings Abortion has dominated the early skirmishing over President Bush’s nomination of John Roberts to the Supreme Court. But the public takes a more expansive view of the court’s agenda. Indeed, about as many Americans rate the rights of detained terrorist suspects as a very important issue for the Supreme Court as say […]

PublicationsAugust 24, 2004

GOP the Religion-Friendly Party

Summary of Findings As the Republicans gather in New York to nominate George W. Bush for a second term, more Americans see the Republican Party than the Democratic Party as friendly toward religion. And most express comfort with President Bush’s reliance on his religious beliefs in making policy decisions. On the issue of gay marriage, […]

PublicationsJuly 21, 2004

Democratic Party Image Improvement

Summary of Findings Sen. John Kerry enters the Democratic convention next week bolstered by a number of favorable trends in public opinion, although he remains locked in a statistical tie for voter support with President George W. Bush. His party is dominant on key domestic issues and at least competitive with the Republicans on every […]

CommentaryJuly 13, 2004

Reading the Polls on Gay Marriage and the Constitution

Pew Research Center Pollwatch

PublicationsFebruary 27, 2004

Gay Marriage a Voting Issue, But Mostly for Opponents

Summary of Findings Gay marriage has surpassed other major social issues like abortion and gun control in its influence on voters. Four-in-ten voters say they would not vote for a candidate who disagrees with them on gay marriage, even if they agree with the candidate on most other issues. By comparison, 34% say they would […]

CommentaryJanuary 29, 2004

A Year of Contention at Home and Abroad

2003 Year-end Report

PublicationsDecember 8, 2003

Primary Preview: Surveys in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina

Summary of Findings Voter opinion is still fluid in the early Democratic primary states of Iowa, New Hampshire and especially South Carolina. As with the candidates themselves, there are significant disagreements among likely primary voters in these pivotal states on such key issues as how to deal with the postwar situation in Iraq, gay marriage […]

Multi-section ReportsNovember 18, 2003

Religious Beliefs Underpin Opposition to Homosexuality

Introduction and Summary Opposition to gay marriage has increased since the summer and a narrow majority of Americans also oppose allowing gays and lesbians to enter legal agreements that fall short of marriage. Moreover, despite the overall rise in tolerance toward gays since the 1980s, many Americans remain highly critical of homosexuals ­ and religious […]