Poll: Support for Same-Sex Marriage at All-time High

BY CHRIS JOHNSON, WASHINGTON BLADE

Washington Blade file photo by Michael Key

An all-time high of 64 percent of Americans now support same-sex marriage nearly two years after the U.S. Supreme Court's historic decision in favor of marriage equality nationwide, according to a Gallup poll.

The poll, published Monday, finds support for same-sex marriage is at the highest since Gallup since first polled the issue in 1996 -- when support for gay nuptials was at 27 percent. The level of support in 2017 is three points higher than when Gallup polled on the issue last year and found 61 percent of Americans back same-sex marriage.

Despite finding record support for same-sex marriage, Gallup says the results are "not meaningfully different" from last year. The margin of sampling error for the poll, which was conducted by phone interviews between May 3 and May 4, is plus-or-minus 4 percentage points at the 95 percent confidence level.

Although the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of same-sex marriage, legislation continues to percolate through state legislatures that would allow businesses to opt out of offering wedding services to same-sex couples and government officials to refuse licenses to them.

The poll found support for same-sex marriage among Democrats is 74 percent followed closely by independents at 71 percent. Meanwhile, support for same-sex marriage among Republicans is comparatively low and at 47 percent, although that level of support is the highest ever recorded for that party.

For the first time, the poll found a majority of Protestants, 55 percent, favor same-sex marriage. A majority of Catholics (despite the opposition to same-sex marriage from church leadership) have consistently supported same-sex marriage since 2011. This year, Gallup found 65 percent of Catholics support same-sex marriage.

President Trump in his 2016 presidential campaign opposed same-sex marriage, but after his election said he's "fine" with the Supreme Court decision and considers the issue "settled."

Chris Johnson is Chief Political & White House Reporter for the Washington Blade. This article originally appeared in the Washington Blade and is made available in partnership with the National Gay Media Association.
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