A telephone survey of 1,7772 registered voters, conducted Jan. 30-Feb. 4, found 55 percent said the organization should allow gays and lesbians to join and 33 percent said the ban on gay members should be retained.
Women support dropping the ban 61 percent to 27 percent. Men support allowing gays and lesbians to join the Boy Scouts, 49 percent to 39 percent, the poll found.
Support for retaining the ban comes from white Catholics [63-25 in favor of the ban], white Protestants [44-41] and white evangelical Protestants [56-33], Quinnipiac said in a release.
"Now that the armed forces ban on openly gay service members has been lifted, and polls show increasing acceptance of same-sex marriage, most American voters think it's time to open up the Boy Scouts too," said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.
The BSA, whose board is meeting this week in Texas, said Wednesday it has delayed a decision on revoking its policy on membership for gays and lesbians "due to the complexity of this issue."
A decision on the policy is to be made by the organization's 1,400 voting members during the annual meeting in May, the statement added.
The poll had a margin of error of 2.3 percentage points.