How Language Affects Poll Results


When it comes to marriage polls, wording matters. This is something that same-sex marriage advocates are well-aware of, and we've seen them use it time and time again -- on polls and ballots alike -- in attempts to skew results in their favor.

Take a look at how Americans responded to two different questions on redefining marriage.

Would you approve or disapprove of changing the definition of the word marriage to also include same-sex couples?

  • Thumbs Up & Down39% Approve
  • 56% Disapprove
  • 5% Don’t Know

Do you favor or oppose legalizing same-sex marriage?

  • 46% Favor
  • 47% Opposed
  • 7% Don’t Know

The first question, which makes clear that marriage would be redefined entirely to include same-sex couples, garnered just 39% support. 56% were opposed to the redefinition. But now take a look at the language of the second, shorter question. When asked if they were for or against legalizing same-sex marriage, the results were drastically different.


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