Poll: More Americans support marriage equalityAround the Nation, Bottom Highlights Thursday, May 10th, 2012
WASHINGTON – New polling data from the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press shows support for marriage equality at 47 percent – significantly higher than it was at any point prior to previous presidential elections. The poll also finds opposition to marriage equality has reached an all-time low. According to the polling, opposition to marriage equality has plummeted nearly 15 percentage points over the last decade, while support has climbed by more than 10 percentage points. The Pew data is just the latest in a number of polls illustrating how issues of LGBT equality are increasingly mainstream, and can no longer be used as divisive wedges.
The landscape surrounding support for LGBT issues has changed significantly since the 2008 presidential election. In previous elections, particularly in 2004, marriage equality was used as a wedge issue to divide voters. This growing wave of data shows that such strategies will no longer work.
For the first time in a Pew Research Center survey there is as much strong support as strong opposition to gay marriage. In the current survey, 22% say they strongly support allowing gays and lesbians to marry legally; an identical percentage (22%) strongly opposes gay marriage. In 2008, there was about twice as much strong opposition to as strong support for gay marriage (30 percent vs. 14 percent).
This latest round of data comes one week after Pew released statistics highlighting marriage equality as the least important issue on the minds of voters in advance of the 2012 election, signaling how matters of LGBT equality are no longer as divisive as they once were. That Pew poll identified the economy, jobs, and the budget deficit as weighing most heavily on voters’ minds.
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