The majority of Americans are not only rooting for marriage equality -- they're also fine with the idea of a gay president, according to a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll. In fact, most Americans would rather see a gay candidate for president than an evangelical Christian or a Tea Partier jockeying for the White House.
In the poll, conducted by Hart Research Associates and Public Opinion Strategies for the news organizations in late April, 61 percent of respondents said they'd be either enthusiastic about or comfortable with a gay presidential candidate. For an evangelical candidate, just 52 percent said they'd be enthusiastic. And in a showing of how unpopular the Tea Party is, just 33 percent said they'd react with enthusiasm or at least a degree of comfort to a candidate affiliated with that conservative movement.
On marriage equality, 58 percent said they want the U.S. Supreme Court to rule for equal marriage rights nationwide; 44 percent said they feel strongly about this. Thirty-seven percent said they would oppose such a ruling, with 29 percent saying they feel strongly. Support for marriage equality was highest among young people, Democrats, Hispanics, and highly educated people, and lowest among conservatives and seniors.
Only 20 percent of respondents thought society had gone too far in accepting homosexuality. Forty-four percent thought more work needed to be done on acceptance, while 32 percent said society has struck a reasonable balance.
The pollsters surveyed 1,000 Americans, and the results have a margin of error of 3.1 percentage points. Go here for the full results of the poll, which also deals with a variety of other issues, including trade policy, police body cameras, and the Republican presidential field.