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Indiana Residents Split On Amendment Banning Same-Sex Marriage. Or Not

By Chuck Sudo in News on Sep 24, 2013 7:45PM

Photo credit: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

When we last checked in on the battle for marriage equality in Indiana, lawmakers in the Hoosier State weren’t letting the Supreme Court’s decision in United States v. Windsor that ruled the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional sway them from moving forward with a constitutional amendment solidifying the state’s ban on same-sex marriage.

Freedom Indiana, a coalition of marriage equality supporters, released a poll Tuesday that, depending on who’s reading it, indicates voters are split on the issue or clearly opposed to it. According to the Indianapolis Star, 46 percent of the poll’s 800 respondents opposed the amendment to define marriage as being between a man and a woman, while 43 percent were in favor of it, according to the poll’s conductor Bellweather Research. The Times of Northwest Indiana, however, reports 64 percent of respondents opposed the amendment and that even a majority of self-identified “very conservative” voters are against it

The margin of respondents opposing the amendment widened, according to the Star, when asked a more detailed question that indicated the amendment would also ban civil unions as well as domestic partnership benefits. Fifty-two percent of respondents said they would vote no on the amendment.

Regardless, opponents of the amendment used the poll to make their case as Indiana Republican lawmakers met privately to discuss the ban. Freedom Indiana leader Megan Robertson said the poll shows those lawmakers are out of touch with their constituents.

"Hoosiers do not want our constitution amended, and we hope lawmakers will hear that message and make the right decision during the legislative session to either let this amendment die or vote it down," said Robertson, who has previously managed several Indiana Republican Congressional campaigns.

She said rewriting the constitution to remove protections for certain Hoosiers sends "the wrong message about our state."

"This is the opposite of Hoosier hospitality," Robertson said.