New Poll Confirms Majority Support For Marriage Equality
March 18, 2011 12:23 pm ET by Equality Matters staff
A new Washington Post-ABC News poll has found that a majority (53-44%) of Americans support allowing gay and lesbian couples to marry, adding to an ever-growing list of polls that show America is moving unalterably towards full LGBT equality. From the March 18 edition of The Washington Post:
Five years ago, at 36 percent, support for gay marriage barely topped a third of all Americans. Now, 53 percent say gay marriage should be legal, marking the first time in Post-ABC polling that a majority has said so.
"This is very consistent with a lot of other polling data we've seen and the general momentum we've seen over the past year and a half," said Evan Wolfson, president of Freedom to Marry, a leading pro-gay-marriage group. "As people have come to understand this is about loving, committed families dealing, like everyone, with tough times, they understand how unfair it is to treat them differently."
The poll uncovered a number of important demographic findings concerning support for marriage equality. Support from religious groups rose sharply; both white Catholics and non-evangelical Protestants showed levels of support for marriage equality well above the national average. Whites and non-whites showed nearly identical levels of support, helping to dispel the myth pushed by some anti-gay groups that marriage equality is the agenda of "white urban liberals."
Brian Brown, president of the anti-gay National Organization for Marriage (NOM), criticized the poll's use of the term "illegal," in their question, which asked "Do you think it should be legal or illegal for gay and lesbian couples to get married?" Brown argued that it "could be inferred to mean that violators could be imprisoned, which most Americans would consider harsh." Unfortunately for Brown, The Washington Post points out that Post-ABC News polls have used such language "in every poll about same-sex marriage since 2003."
More importantly, the Post-ABC News poll is in line with the trending of polls conducted by CNN, AP, the Pew Research Center, and countless other organizations, which all found that marriage equality was either already supported by a majority of respondents or rapidly moving towards majority support.
As the American public continues to evolve in its support for the equal treatment of gay and lesbian couples, it's no surprise that Republicans are shying away from pursuing anti-LGBT legislation. Before long, even anti-gay groups will be forced to recognize that the fight against LGBT equality is a losing battle.