Nevadans Show Opposition to Gay Marriage - 8 News NOW

Nevadans Show Opposition to Gay Marriage

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LAS VEGAS -- The debate over same sex marriage heated up across the country after a judge ruled California's Proposition 8 is unconstitutional.

To gauge Nevadan's attitudes about the issue, and 8 News NOW and Las Vegas Review-Journal poll asked registered voters how they feel. Thirty-five-percent said they support legalizing same sex marriage and 46-percent opposed it.

While proponents of same sex marriage call the California ruling a victory, Proposition 8 supporters say they'll take their appeal all the way to the United States Supreme Court.

Do you support or oppose legalizing gay marriage in Nevada?

Support 35% 25% 45% 50% 17% 40%
Oppose 46% 57% 35% 29% 67% 39%
Undecided 19% 18% 20% 21% 16% 21%

Phil Prentice and Ernie Tate have been together for 52 years. They exchanged vows in 2008, when same sex marriage was legalized in California. But Proposition 8 stopped same sex marriage dead in its tracks shortly after.

Last week, a California judge struck down Proposition 8, deeming it unconstitutional.

"He's right. It's not fair. The Constitution was written in such a way that everyone was equal," said Tate.

But Richard Ziser, chairman with Nevada's Concerned Citizens says Proposition 8 assures equality if man were to marry a woman.

"You can wrap it up in traditional family values. The values that marriage is between man and woman. That's the basis of family and we shouldn't be messing with the definition of marriage," he said.

Ziser and his colleagues were responsible for Proposition 2 in Nevada. Prop 2 made it a constitutional amendment protecting marriage between a man and a woman, and it passed with 70-percent of the vote.

"You can have your relationships and do what you want. But re-defining marriage doesn't make a whole lot of sense," he said.

"We would like the right to love each other, but everyone is saying that's wrong. Why is that wrong for me to love him as opposed to hating him," said Tate.

Meanwhile, the certificate of marriage between Tate and Prentice remains on the wall. But both question whether it will ever be real or not.

Proposition 8 supporters say the only way they may be able to win at the Supreme Court is promoting a strong Constitutional amendment defining marriage in the Constitution between man and woman only.

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