Americans Favor Gay Unions Over Marriage

Aug 8, 2012 by

Recently released figures from the Washington, D.C.-based Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life survey show that while 57% of Americans favor allowing gay and lesbian couples to enter into civil unions, 53% of Americans say they are opposed to same-sex marriages. Just 39% percent say they support legal recognition for gay marriages. The survey indicates that while most Americans do not favor same-sex marriages, the ratio is changing and support is slowly growing. The increase in support for same-sex civil unions may show that people have become slightly more favorable towards allowing legal arrangements for homosexual couples than they did in 2003 when the Pew study showed just 45% of Americans supporting same-sex civil unions. However, the study did show that overall support for same-sex civil unions grew significantly in just one year from 24% in 2008 to 30% in 2009.

The Pew Forum report also showed that viewpoints on the issue often vary according to the age, sex, race, education and location of the respondents.

The numbers of those now supporting same-sex marriages in the United States include:

58% of people ages 18 through 29
38% of people ages 30 through 49
43% of women
34% of men
26% of African Americans
45% of Hispanics
39% of Caucasians
49% of college graduates
74% of liberal Democrats
14% of conservative Republicans
30% of non-Hispanic white Catholics who attend church regularly
54% of non-Hispanic white Catholics who attend church less than weekly
38% of Southerners
42% of Midwesterners
47% of Westerners
45% of Easterners

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