In conjunction with a pro-marriage amendment group in North Carolina, Public Opinion Strategies has released a brief critique of Elon University’s polling on same-sex marriage. A recent Elon poll concluded that 54 percent of North Carolinians oppose the amendment, even while other polls (from both left-of-center and right-of-center groups) show support around 60 percent.
The POS brief lists two problems with the methodology of the Elon poll. First, it doesn’t filter for registered or likely voters. Second, the survey doesn’t test the actual ballot language (“Marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this state”). Instead, it asks whether respondents support “an amendment to the North Carolina constitution that would ban same-sex marriage.”
Both factors contribute to producing a result more favorable to opponents of the amendment.