As Obama Extends Federal Benefits to Gay Partners, Poll Suggests Broad Support

A Gallup survey suggests support for extending benefits to gay partners of federal employees.

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By Dan Gilgoff, God & Country

Will most Americans support President Obama's executive order extending certain benefits to same-sex partners of federal employees? Probably, according to a Gallup Poll released last month.

The poll found that, while most Americans oppose gay marriage, 67 percent say "gay and lesbian domestic partners should have access to health insurance and other employee benefits."

The one difference between the Gallup question and Obama's move is that American taxpayers will be footing the bill for the extended federal benefits.

It seems that marriage is the one major gay rights issue where religious conservatives still have the majority of the country on their side. According to Gallup, 69 percent of Americans favor gays openly serving in the military, 73 percent support inheritance rights for gay and lesbian domestic partners, and 67 percent support expanding hate crime legislation to protect gays.

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