Conservative lobby group Family First have released the results of an equal marriage poll showing that the majority of respondents believe same sex couples should have the right to marry.
47 per cent of those polled believe Parliament should change the definition of marriage to include same sex couples with 43 per cent against a change, believing that civil unions are sufficient. The poll of 1000 people was carried out during February and allows for a 3.2 per cent margin of area.
Green Party MP Kevin Hague weighs in on the poll and says,”In this case the client, Family First, has obviously written the questions, rather than someone who is actually skilled in questionnaire design and research methods. This is an absolute no-no, and renders the results largely useless. Scientifically designed polls have consistently shown much higher levels of support.”
“Yet even with a set of biased questions like these, Family First have still got more people supporting marriage equality than opposing. I think I would describe this as a spectacular own goal!”
Hague also says that also worth noting is that according to the “admittedly nonsensical” survey “more than 90% of people now support at least civil unions – evidence of massive social change since 2004, and hope that marriage equality will also become very widely accepted after it has been in place for a while and the sky hasn’t fallen.”
The research also showed that 80 percent of those polled believed “marriage celebrants should not be forced to perform same-sex weddings if it goes against their personal convictions.”
49 percent of people polled also believe ”any changes to the Marriage Act should be subject to a binding referendum.” 41 percent of people opposed a referendum.
The marriage equality select committee are due to report back to Parliament this Thursday, 28 February, with their findings. The second reading of Louisa Wall’s Marriage Amendment Bill is due to take place 13 March.
| Sarah Murphy