Right is right. Having popular opinion either for you or against you is not the determining factor.
Whether Bush was right or wrong to go into Iraq is now beside the point, we have troops there and we need to stay til it is done. If every person outside the military and their families disagreed with Bush, it would be right to stay the course; polls don't matter.
Marriage has two components. There is the religious ritual and the legal union of two people. Religions can limit their blessing to only those acceptable to the religion - two Jews, two Muslims, a man and a woman... But the state controls the legal union and that should not be limited by a religious point of view. The state does not have the right to discriminate. State sanctioned unions are not marriages and marriages are not state sanctioned unions. While there may be considerable overlap, there is no reason to believe one MUST beget the other.
If Elliott Spitzer wants civil unions in NY to be gay-friendly, I think he is right. Claiming the polls oppose such unions does not make the opposition to them right.
Conservatives should stand for what is right, not popular. It is a lesson that conservatives wanted to teach Congress and Bush on immigration, it should be a lesson conservatives learn for themselves on civil unions and marriage.