June 1, 2015 - U.S. Voters Back Supreme Court Ok For Gay Marriage, Quinnipiac University National Poll Finds; Less Support For Death Penalty - Except For Terrorism Quinnipiac University Polling Logo
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Sample and Methodology detail

American voters say 56 - 38 percent they would support a U.S. Supreme Court decision granting same-sex couples the constitutional right to marry, according to a Quinnipiac University National poll released today. Voters support 56 - 36 percent same-sex marriage in general.

Backing a possible Supreme Court decision in favor of same-sex marriage are Democrats 70 - 24 percent, independent voters 61 - 34 percent, men 55 - 41 percent and women 57 - 35 percent. Republicans are opposed 62 - 34 percent, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe- ack) University Poll finds.

Voters also oppose 53 - 40 percent allowing individual states to prohibit same-sex marriage, and support 57 - 36 percent requiring states to recognize same-sex marriages legally performed in other states. Democrats, independent voters, men and women back same-sex marriage in these questions, with Republicans opposed.

American voters are leaning against the death penalty in general, as 48 percent say a person convicted of murder should be sentenced to life without parole, while 43 percent back the death penalty for convicted murderers.

A person convicted of murder during an act of terror should receive the death penalty, 58 percent of voters say, while 36 percent call for life without parole.

Convicted Boston bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev should get the death penalty, 62 percent of voters say, while 34 percent back life without parole.

"American voters may be moving away from the death penalty in general, but there is absolutely no ambivalence when it comes to executing convicted Boston bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev," said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll.

President Obama Approval

American voters disapprove 50 - 43 percent of the job President Barack Obama is doing, compared to a 49 - 44 percent disapproval in an April 27 Quinnipiac University poll.

Voters disapprove 61 - 30 percent of the job Democrats in Congress are doing and disapprove 73 - 17 percent of the job Republicans in Congress are doing.

The U.S. and its allies are losing the fight against ISIS, American voters say 64 - 17 percent. Republicans, Democrats and independent voters, and men and women, all agree the U.S. is losing.

America is doing too much around the world and should focus more on domestic problems, 64 percent of voters say, while 32 percent say the U.S. must continue to promote democracy around the world.

"Americans, by a huge margin, believe the fight against ISIS is being lost," Malloy said.

"By a 2-1 margin, voters think the United States is too overextended and should focus on domestic issues."

Trains, Planes and Automobiles

Only 5 percent of American voters rely on trains when traveling long distances, while 50 percent go by plane; 41 percent go by car and 2 percent take the bus.

They feel most safe traveling by car, 51 percent of Americans say, while 31 percent feel most safe on a plane; 11 percent feel safest on a train and 3 percent feel safest on a bus.

But 30 percent feel least safe on a plane, followed by 26 percent on a bus, 23 percent in a car and 14 percent on a train.

From May 19 - 26, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,711 registered voters nationwide with a margin of error of +/- 2.4 percentage points. Live interviewers call land lines and cell phones.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts public opinion surveys in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Florida, Ohio, Virginia, Iowa, Colorado and the nation as a public service and for research.

For more information, visit http://www.quinnipiac.edu/polling, call (203) 582-5201, or follow us on Twitter @QuinnipiacPoll.

7. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling his job as President?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Approve              43%     7%    80%    40%    41%    45%
Disapprove           50     92     15     50     53     47
DK/NA                 7      1      5     10      6      8
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling his job as President? (* High also 59% Mar 2009)
                                                             APPROVE.......
                                                             High    Low
                     Jun 01  Apr 27  Mar 04  Nov 25  Jul 02  Jun 04  Dec 10
                     2015    2015    2015    2014    2014    2009*   2013
 
Approve              43      44      41      39      40      59      38
Disapprove           50      49      52      54      53      31      57
DK/NA                 7       7       7       8       7      10       6
 
 
8. Do you approve or disapprove of the way the Republicans in Congress are handling their job?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Approve              17%    40%     9%    10%    18%    16%
Disapprove           73     52     85     77     74     73
DK/NA                10      8      6     12      8     11
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way the Republicans in Congress are handling their job? (* High also 34% Mar 3 2011, Mar 2010, ** Low also 17% Jan 2014, Oct 2013)
                                                             APPROVE.......
                                                             High    Low
                     Jun 01  Apr 27  Mar 04  Nov 26  Jul 08  Mar 31  Jun 01  
                     2015    2015    2015    2014    2014    2011*   2015**    
                                                                             
Approve              17      22      22      23      18      34      17      
Disapprove           73      69      69      69      73      55      73      
DK/NA                10       9       9       8       9      11      10      
 
 
9. Do you approve or disapprove of the way the Democrats in Congress are handling their job?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Approve              30%     9%    62%    19%    27%    33%
Disapprove           61     85     29     70     67     55
DK/NA                 9      5      8     11      6     12
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way the Democrats in Congress are handling their job? (* Low also 24% Nov 2011, Oct 2011, Sep 2011)
                                                             APPROVE.......
                                                             High    Low
                     Jun 01  Apr 27  Mar 04  Nov 26  Jul 08  Mar 04  Nov 26
                     2015    2015    2015    2014    2014    2009    2014*
 
Approve              30      30      28      24      29      45      24
Disapprove           61      61      62      67      63      45      67
DK/NA                 9       9      10       9       8      10       9
 
 
10. In general, how satisfied are you with the way things are going in the nation today; are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Very satisfied        2%     1%     4%     1%     2%     2%
Smwht satisfied      26     11     48     20     27     25
Smwht dissatisfied   32     36     30     34     31     33
Very dissatisfied    39     53     16     45     39     39
DK/NA                 1      -      2      1      1      1
 
TREND: In general, how satisfied are you with the way things are going in the nation today; are you very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, or very dissatisfied?
                                                             VERY+SMWHT SAT
                                                             High    Low
                     Jun 01  Apr 27  Mar 04  Nov 25  Jul 08  Dec 11  Nov 13
                     2015    2015    2015    2014    2014    2001    2008
 
Very satisfied        2       2       2       2       2      21       2
Smwht satisfied      26      28      29      23      24      47      14
Smwht dissatisfied   32      32      33      32      31      19      38
Very dissatisfied    39      37      35      42      43      10      44
DK/NA                 1       1       1       1       -       3       2
 
 
41. Who do you trust more to make decisions that are good for the country, President Obama or the Republicans in Congress?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Obama                45%     5%    84%    42%    41%    49%
Reps in Congress     43     91     10     40     47     39
DK/NA                12      4      6     19     12     12
 
TREND: Who do you trust more to make decisions that are good for the country, President Obama or the Republicans in Congress?
                     Jun 01  Apr 27  Mar 04  Nov 25
                     2015    2015    2015    2014
 
Obama                45      45      42      42
Reps in Congress     43      43      47      47
DK/NA                12      13      11      12
 
 
42. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling - the economy?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Approve              46%     9%    80%    44%    45%    48%
Disapprove           50     87     16     52     52     48
DK/NA                 4      4      4      4      4      4
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling the economy? (* Low also 32% Sep 2011)
                                                             APPROVE.......
                                                             High    Low
                     Jun 01  Apr 27  Mar 04  Jul 02  Apr 02  Mar 04  Oct 06
                     2015    2015    2015    2014    2014    2009    2011*
 
Approve              46      45      44      40      40      57      32
Disapprove           50      50      50      55      55      33      64
DK/NA                 4       5       6       4       4      10       4
 
 
43. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling - foreign policy?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Approve              38%     5%    73%    34%    34%    42%
Disapprove           56     91     22     59     61     50
DK/NA                 6      5      6      7      5      8
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling foreign policy?
                                                             APPROVE.......
                                                             High    Low
                     Jun 01  Apr 27  Mar 04  Jul 02  Apr 02  Apr 29  Mar 04
                     2015    2015    2015    2014    2014    2009    2015
 
Approve              38      39      35      37      39      57      35
Disapprove           56      53      55      57      55      32      55
DK/NA                 6       8      10       6       6      11      10
 
 
62. Would you describe the state of the nation's economy these days as excellent, good, not so good, or poor?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Excellent             1%     -      3%     1%     2%     1%
Good                 34     15     55     31     36     32
Not so good          37     48     33     33     36     37
Poor                 27     37      9     33     26     28
DK/NA                 1      -      1      1      1      1
 
TREND: Would you describe the state of the nation's economy these days as excellent, good, not so good, or poor?
                                                             EXLNT+GOOD....
                                                             High    Low
                     Jun 01  Mar 04  Nov 25  Jul 02  Apr 02  Dec 10  Mar 04
                     2015    2015    2014    2014    2014    2003    2009
 
Excellent             1       2       2       1       -       3       -
Good                 34      34      31      22      26      37       3
Not so good          37      41      38      43      44      42      28
Poor                 27      21      28      34      30      16      68
DK/NA                 1       1       1       -       -       1       -
 
 
63. Do you think the nation's economy is getting better, getting worse, or staying about the same?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Better               33%    12%    55%    32%    33%    33%
Worse                24     38     11     25     24     25
The same             42     50     34     43     42     42
DK/NA                 1      1      1      -      1      -
 
TREND: Do you think the nation's economy is getting better, getting worse, or staying about the same? (* Low also 11% Sep 2011)
                                                             BETTER........
                                                             High    Low
                     Jun 01  Mar 04  Nov 25  Jul 02  Apr 02  Jan 18  Oct 06
                     2015    2015    2014    2014    2014    2011    2011*
 
Better               33      34      34      26      29      36      11
Worse                24      22      22      31      29      20      44
The same             42      43      43      43      42      43      44
DK/NA                 1       1       1       1       1       2       1
 
 
64. Would you say that you are better off or worse off financially than you were a year ago?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Better off           45%    29%    61%    43%    46%    43%
Worse off            30     43     15     33     30     31
SAME(VOL)            23     27     23     21     23     24
DK/NA                 2      1      2      2      2      2
 
TREND: Would you say that you are better off or worse off financially than you were a year ago?
                                                             BETTER OFF....
                                                             High    Low
                     Jun 01  Mar 04  May 02  Nov 13  May 05  Jun 01  Nov 13  
                     2015    2015    2013    2008    2004    2015    2008    
                                                                             
Better off           45      41      36      27      43      45      27      
Worse off            30      32      41      50      34      30      50      
SAME(VOL)            23      24      22      22      22      23      22      
DK/NA                 2       2       1       1       1       2       1      
 
 
65. When you travel long distances which one of these modes of transportation do you most prefer: plane, car, bus, or train?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Plane                50%    45%    54%    49%    50%    49%
Car                  41     50     38     39     42     41
Bus                   2      1      2      3      2      2
Train                 5      2      4      7      4      6
DK/NA                 2      2      3      2      2      3
 
 
66. Which one of the following do you think is the most cost-effective way to travel: plane, car, bus, or train?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Plane                30%    31%    30%    30%    33%    27%
Car                  35     43     31     32     31     38
Bus                  13      9     16     14     12     14
Train                17     13     18     19     19     15
DK/NA                 5      4      5      5      5      5
 
 
67. Do you feel most safe traveling by: plane, car, bus, or train?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Plane                31%    31%    34%    29%    33%    28%
Car                  51     54     46     51     47     54
Bus                   3      3      3      3      3      3
Train                11      8     13     12     13     10
DK/NA                 5      5      4      4      4      5
 
 
68. Do you feel least safe traveling by: plane, car, bus, or train?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Plane                30%    34%    27%    28%    28%    31%
Car                  23     19     27     24     27     20
Bus                  26     26     23     27     24     27
Train                14     14     13     14     13     15
DK/NA                 8      6      9      6      8      8
 
 
69. If you could vacation this summer in any state other than your own, which would it be?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Alabama               1%     -      -      2%     1%     1%
Alaska                5      7      3      5      6      4
Arizona               2      3      2      3      3      2
Arkansas              -      1      -      -      -      -
California           10      5     15     10     10     10
Colorado              5      6      4      5      6      5
Connecticut           -      -      -      -      -      -
Delaware              -      -      -      -      -      -
Florida              14     17     16     11     15     14
Georgia               1      1      1      1      -      2
Hawaii               14     15     14     12     14     14
Idaho                 -      1      -      1      -      -
Illinois              1      -      1      -      1      1
Indiana               -      -      -      -      -      -
Iowa                  -      -      -      -      -      -
Kansas                -      -      -      -      -      -
Kentucky              -      -      -      -      -      -
Louisiana             2      1      2      1      1      2
Maine                 4      4      3      5      3      4
Maryland              -      -      -      -      -      -
Massachusetts         1      1      1      1      1      1
Michigan              1      -      1      1      1      1
Minnesota             -      -      -      1      -      -
Mississippi           -      -      -      -      -      -
Missouri              -      -      -      -      1      -
Montana               3      2      3      4      4      2
Nebraska              -      1      -      -      -      -
Nevada                2      2      3      1      2      2
New Hampshire         -      -      -      1      -      -
New Jersey            1      1      1      -      1      1
New Mexico            1      1      1      1      1      1
New York              3      2      4      3      2      4
North Carolina        3      4      2      4      3      3
North Dakota          -      1      -      -      -      -
Ohio                  1      -      1      1      1      1
Oklahoma              -      -      -      -      -      -
Oregon                3      1      3      4      2      3
Pennsylvania          -      1      -      -      -      -
Rhode Island          -      1      -      -      -      -
South Carolina        3      3      3      2      3      2
South Dakota          -      -      -      -      -      -
Tennessee             1      2      1      2      1      2
Texas                 3      4      2      3      3      3
Utah                  1      1      -      2      1      1
Vermont               1      1      -      1      1      1
Virginia              1      1      2      1      1      1
Washington            4      2      5      4      3      5
West Virginia         -      -      -      -      -      -
Wisconsin             1      1      1      1      1      1
Wyoming               2      3      -      2      2      1
DK/NA                 3      2      3      4      4      3
 
 
70. Please tell me which of the following statements comes closer to your point of view: A) The United States is doing too much in other countries around the world, and it is time to do less around the world and focus more on our own problems here at home. B) The United States must continue to push forward to promote democracy and freedom in other countries around the world because these efforts make our own country more secure.
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
A) Focus on home     64%    56%    63%    68%    61%    66%
B) Promote democracy 32     42     34     27     35     30
DK/NA                 4      2      3      5      4      4
 
TREND: Please tell me which of the following statements comes closer to your point of view: A) The United States is doing too much in other countries around the world, and it is time to do less around the world and focus more on our own problems here at home. B) The United States must continue to push forward to promote democracy and freedom in other countries around the world because these efforts make our own country more secure.
                     Jun 01  Jul 03
                     2015    2014
 
A) Focus on home     64      64
B) Promote democracy 32      32
DK/NA                 4       4
 
 
72. Do you think the United States and its allies are winning or losing the fight against ISIS, the Islamic militant group operating in Iraq and Syria?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Winning              17%    12%    28%    13%    20%    15%
Losing               64     74     50     69     63     64
DK/NA                19     14     23     17     16     21
 
 
73. Do you support or oppose allowing same-sex couples to get married?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Support              56%    35%    69%    61%    55%    57%
Oppose               36     57     24     32     36     35
DK/NA                 8      8      7      7      8      8
 
TREND: Do you support or oppose allowing same-sex couples to get married?
                     Jun 01  Apr 27
                     2015    2015
 
Support              56      58
Oppose               36      34
DK/NA                 8       8
 
 
74. Overall, do you support or oppose allowing individual states to prohibit same-sex marriages?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Support              40%    56%    26%    39%    45%    35%
Oppose               53     36     69     53     50     56
DK/NA                 7      8      5      7      5      9
 
75. Overall, do you support or oppose requiring states to recognize same-sex marriages performed legally in other states?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Support              57%    37%    72%    62%    55%    59%
Oppose               36     56     23     32     38     33
DK/NA                 7      7      4      7      6      7
 
 
76. The U.S. Supreme Court could decide that same-sex couples have a constitutional right to marry, which would have the effect of legalizing same sex marriage throughout the country. Would you support or oppose the Supreme Court taking this action?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Support              56%    34%    70%    61%    55%    57%
Oppose               38     62     24     34     41     35
DK/NA                 5      4      6      5      3      7
 
 
77. Do you support or oppose the health care law passed by Barack Obama and Congress in 2010?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Support              43%     8%    79%    40%    42%    45%
Oppose               51     88     17     53     54     48
DK/NA                 6      4      4      7      5      7
 
TREND: Do you support or oppose the health care law passed by Barack Obama and Congress in 2010?
                                                             SUPPORT.......
                                                             High    Low
                     Jun 01  Nov 25  Jul 02  Apr 02  Jan 22  Oct 01  Jan 22
                     2015    2014    2014    2014    2014    2013    2014
 
Support              43      40      43      41      38      45      38
Oppose               51      54      55      55      56      47      56
DK/NA                 6       6       2       5       7       8       7
 
 
78. Do you think Congress should try to repeal the health care law, or should they let it stand?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Should repeal it     46%    84%    15%    44%    49%    42%
Should let it stand  48     12     82     48     46     50
DK/NA                 6      4      3      8      5      7
 
TREND: Do you think Congress should try to repeal the health care law, or should they let it stand?
                                                             SHOULD REPEAL
                                                             High    Low
                     Jun 01  Nov 25  Jul 12  Apr 20  Feb 23  Feb 23  May 04
                     2015    2014    2012    2012    2012    2012    2011
                                                                     
Should repeal it     46      48      49      51      52      52      44
Should let it stand  48      46      43      38      39      39      45
DK/NA                 6       6       8      11      10      10      11
 
 
79. Which punishment do you prefer for people convicted of murder; the death penalty or life in prison with no chance of parole?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Death penalty        43%    60%    27%    43%    48%    39%
Life/no parole       48     33     64     47     44     51
DK/NA                 9      7      9     10      8     10
 
TREND: Which punishment do you prefer for people convicted of murder; the death penalty or life in prison with no chance of parole?
                     Jun 01  May 02  Jul 17  Dec 15
                     2015    2013    2008    2004
 
Death penalty        43      48      47      42
Life/no parole       48      43      44      46
DK/NA                 9       9       9      12
 
 
80. In general, do you think people convicted of murder during an act of terrorism should receive the death penalty or life in prison with no chance of parole?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Death penalty        58%    75%    41%    59%    64%    53%
Life/no parole       36     21     55     34     32     41
DK/NA                 5      3      4      7      4      6
 
TREND: In general, do you think people convicted of murder during an act of terrorism should receive the death penalty or life in prison with no chance of parole?
                     Jun 01  May 02
                     2015    2013
 
Death penalty        58      63
Life/no parole       36      32
DK/NA                 5       5
 
 
81. As you may know, the jury in the case of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the man convicted of the Boston Marathon bombing, sentenced him to the death penalty. Do you think he should receive the death penalty or life in prison with no chance of parole?
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom
 
Death penalty        62%    79%    45%    63%    65%    59%
Life/no parole       34     18     51     33     32     37
DK/NA                 3      3      3      4      3      4