Thursday Freedom to Marry and Anzalone Liszt Grove Research released a first-of-its-kind poll showing that a majority of registered voters who live in states without the freedom to marry nevertheless support marriage for same-sex couples, with only 41 percent still opposed. The poll, conducted in December 2013, uniquely examines support for the freedom to marry specifically in the states where marriage for same-sex couples is not legal.
“The findings of today’s poll show that support for the freedom to marry in America is not limited to coastal states or politically liberal states, or even states that have ended discrimination,” said Evan Wolfson, founder and president of Freedom to Marry. “Instead, Americans all across the country have opened their hearts and minds and followed their values of fairness and freedom to move in support of the freedom to marry. This accelerating nationwide support lines up with the legal victories we’ve seen in more conservative states, including Utah and Oklahoma, and explains why the reaction to these court rulings was largely positive. America is ready for the freedom to marry.”
The poll shows support in non-marriage states at 51 percent, with strongest numbers in the Central and Western parts of the country (59 percent and 53 percent of voters, respectively). Even in the South, voters are split evenly on the freedom to marry, 46 percent in support and 46 percent opposed. In addition, the poll finds that regardless of personal views, 56 percent of voters believe that marriage will be legal in their state in a couple of years (including 49 percent among marriage opponents.) To read the full polling memo, visit this link.
Freedom to Marry also released its latest strategy memo, “The Pathway Forward,” offering up two potential timelines – as soon as 2015 or 2017 – for a successful return to the Supreme Court to bring the country to national resolution. The strategy memo explains that the legal victories in Utah, Oklahoma, and Ohio are a result of the bedrock legal case for ending marriage discrimination (and absence of justifications for perpetuating it), buttressed by favorable public opinion, greater constitutional clarity stemming from the United States vs. Windsor decision, and tens of thousands of couples getting married.
Underscoring the Freedom to Marry strategy that has propelled the progress to date and that will lead to victory, Wolfson noted, “While we can’t know when the Supreme Court will take up a case and ultimately end the patchwork of marriage discrimination in America, what we do know is that we must continue making the same case in the court of public opinion that attorneys are making in the court of law to create a climate that is as favorable as possible to victory.”
To read “The Pathway Forward,” visit this link.