Thursday, May 22, 2014

POLL: National Suport for Marriage Equality Now At 55%

The most recent Gallup poll indicates that support for marriage equality among the American people is at an all-time high of 55% nationwide. That is up 1 percentage point from last year's previous high water mark of 54%.

While recognizing the recent victories in Oregon and Pennsylvania, Gallup notes that there is still a majority against marriage equality among those who live in the Southern U.S.:
An important region on the radar of gay marriage advocates is the South, where a condensed cluster of bans on same-sex marriage exists. All southern states have constitutional bans on same-sex marriage, from Louisiana in 2004 through North Carolina in 2012, though bans have been challenged in Arkansas and Kentucky. The South (48%) is the only region where same-sex marriage support falls below the 50% mark. Support is highest in the East, where two-thirds (67%) of residents support gay marriage. 
For proponents of marriage equality, years of playing offense have finally paid off as this movement has reached a tipping point in recent years -- both legally and in the court of public opinion. The latest gains are in Pennsylvania and Oregon, with court challenges in Utah, Oklahoma, and Virginia likely to be determined soon. Having spent years trying to influence state lawmakers to take action, gay marriage supporters' game strategy has officially pivoted to challenging state bans in court. One key question in the legal battle is the constitutionality of voter-approved state bans. 
Younger Americans are more supportive of same-sex marriage, and this will likely continue to drive overall support at the gradual pace it has increased over recent years. While the map of gay marriage is regionally diverse, it is not so in the South, where traditional marriage advocates still hold a majority of support. Public opinion in southern states will be a barometer to observe, as the bulk of future legal battles will play out there in the months and years to come.
Hat/tip to Joe.My.God 

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