Support for marriage equality has grown across all 50 US states over the past eight years, a new report has found.
Published by the UCLA’s Williams Institute, ‘Public Support for Marriage for Same-Sex Couples by State’, it found with an average increase of 13.6%.
If public opinion trends continue at the same pace, this means eight additional states will be above the 50% support mark by the end of next year.
The Williams Institute researchers say gay rights acitivsts should not get overly optimistic by the findings, as they pointed to a ‘notable disparity’ that exists across state boundaries.
It follows the 50th senator showing support for marriage equality, Republican Mark Kirk.
Compared to last year, when only 15 senators supported same-sex marriage, 49 senators as well as the country’s vice president Joe Biden support it.
According to website Polling Report, 69% of Democrats support gay marriage opposed to 24% of Republicans.
Josh Barro, on his blog at Blomberg View, says that gay marriage hasn’t won yet, but its opponents have lost.
‘The more accurate statement is that foes of gay marriage have lost,’ Barro wrote.
‘Opponents of gay marriage don’t just want to deny rights to same sex couples, they want to use that denial of rights to establish a social norm that holds out opposite-sex marriage as the right and best way to form a family.
‘But overwhelming elite and (soon) mass opinion in favour of marriage equality have destroyed the norm-setting power of laws against same-sex marriage.’
Marriage equality is currently legal in nine US states and the District of Columbia.