STUDY: Support For Gay Marriage Has Increased In Every State By 13.6%

State Approval of Marriage in 2012

According to a new report by the Williams Institute, every state has seen increases in support for same-sex marriage over the last eight years.

The report, Public Support for Marriage for Same-sex Couples by State, reveals each state’s current level of public opinion and how it has differed since 2004.

Main findings include:

  • By the end of 2012, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington, and the District of Columbia had support for same-sex marriage at or above 50 percent.
  • Of these 12 states, all currently perform marriages, civil unions, or domestic partnerships for same-sex couples.
  • Alaska, Arizona, Delaware, Illinois, Iowa, Maryland, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, and South Dakota are currently within five percentage points of majority support.
  • In the last eight years, every state has increased in its support for marriage for same-sex couples with an average increase of 13.6 percent.
  • If present public opinion trends continue, another eight states will be above 50 percent support by the end of 2014.

Since 2009, six states – Maine, Maryland, New York, New Hampshire, Vermont and Washington – have passed laws introducing same-sex marriage while five additional states – Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Nevada, and Rhode Island – introduced civil unions or domestic partnerships for same-sex couples.

Despite increased support for same-sex marriage across the country, research revealed a 31% disparity between the lowest level of support found in a state (Louisiana/Arkansas, 31%) and the highest (Washington, D.C., 62%).

For the full report, click here.

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  • Cam

    Gee, what a surprise, the states with a history of enslaving others and fighting against civil rights are the ones with the lowest approval rates overall.


    As Cam pointed out, the geography of support for marriage equality is very interesting. What stood out to me was not only the South, but also Utah…I suppose that the Mormon Church has a big influence on the social attitudes in Utah.

  • Polaro

    Yep, the stupidest states are the problem, as they always seem to be on whatever issue the nation has. Homophobia, poor education, inadequate health care, obesity, teen pregnancies, high welfare rates, abortions… Maybe we did loose the Civil War.

  • Rock Star

    I agree totally with every word 1, 2, and 3 said.

  • brent

    If this report is true, then why are democrats in California trying to overturn prop. 8 in the supreme court. Why don’t they hold another election

  • boring

    Totally not buying Oregon, we’re a red state outside of Portland, and it sure as shit hasn’t passed yet.

  • mcflyer54

    March poll conducted by The Columbus Dispatch shows 54% of Ohioans favor marriage equality. And now both of Ohio’s senators (Democrat Sherrod Brown handily won reelection in 2012 and Republican Rob Portman, who isn’t up for reelection until 2016) are in support of marriage equality.

  • trelin

    Here’s hoping NJ will come around, once we get the obese abe out of office.

  • unclemike

    @brent: They’re not mutually exclusive, brent. Support has grown in the years it’s taken the Prop 8 to wind its way through the courts. By the way, it’s not “democrats” that are forcing the Supreme Court to review the matter–if the supporters of Prop 8 hadn’t repealed it over and over, gay people would have been allowed to again marry in CA years ago.

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