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Poll: 50 Percent Disapprove of Gay Marriage

Half of Americans disapprove of same-sex marriages and do not want their states to recognize gay marriages (search) from Massachusetts, a new survey by the Boston Globe shows.

The poll released Sunday found that 50 percent of Americans disapprove of gay and lesbian marriages, while 37 percent approve and 11 percent are neutral.

The poll also found that half of Americans believe gay marriages from Massachusetts, where same-sex marriages are legal, should not be recognized in their state. Forty-six percent said they should be recognized.

The poll of 760 randomly selected adults was conducted May 4-9 by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center (search). It has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.6 percent.

Massachusetts began granting same-sex marriage licenses a year ago after a landmark decision by the state Supreme Judicial Court that declared the state could not prohibit gay marriages. More than 6,000 same-sex couples have since tied the knot in the state.

Although the poll found that half of Americans disapprove of gay marriages, 46 percent of those surveyed said they support civil unions that would provide gay couples with "some, but not all of the legal rights of married couples." Forty-one percent opposed civil unions.

Americans older than age 65, Republicans, Protestants, regular churchgoers and Southerners were more likely to oppose gay marriage.

People under age 35, Democrats and people who do not attend worship services or attend sporadically were more likely to support gay marriages.