Poll: Majority of public want Church of England to hold same-sex weddings

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A new poll has found that the majority of the people in England and Wales wish for the Church of England to be able to conduct same-sex marriages.

The poll by ComRes for the Independent has found that by a margin of 2 to 1, people oppose the current proposals to make it illegal for the Church of England to conduct same-sex marriages while giving every other church or religious institution the right to opt-in if it wants to. The Government proposed the ban on the Church of England in an effort to appease bishops after they mounted a vocal campaign against the original plans for equal marriage.

62 per cent of people said that the Church of England should hold same-sex marriages, while just 31 per cent disagreed. Seven per cent of those asked said they were unsure.

The idea of gay couples marrying in Church of England weddings is more popular among women with the figures 64 per cent in favour to 27 objecting. Among under 44s, almost three quarters of people support the idea of church gay weddings. It is only in the over 65s where there is a majority in opposition, although it is not sizable- 50 per cent to 38 per cent.

On Christmas Day, the Catholic Archbishop of Westminster claimed claimed that during a “period of listening”, the public were “7-1 against same-sex marriage”.

Earlier this month, 150 Church of England vicars wrote an open letter saying that they would conduct same-sex marriages despite a ban on them taking place in any Church of England properties.

The choice of pollster is interesting as ComRes has been the primary polling organisation for the anti-gay Coalition for Marriage. In a recent ComRes poll, 62% of people agreed with the statement “marriage should continue to be defined as a life-long exclusive commitment between a man and a woman”.
This was used by the Coalition for Marriage to claim the majority of the public oppose marriage equality. It is clear now that a poll by the same polling company has shown that the public not only supports same-sex marriage, but also it taking place in church.