Majority of Americans Support Gay Marriage (Video)

A new group is pushing for marriage equality to be ‘reframed’ towards promoting the value of commitment.

Based on extensive research by the centrist Democrat group Third Way, it says that:

“National polls now indicate that a majority of Americans support allowing gay couples to marry. Our country has undergone an unprecedented shift on the issue, with support doubling in just 15 years. But these gains are not yet locked in—a sizable chunk of the support is still susceptible to the arguments of marriage opponents. “

“One in four Americans would grudgingly accept it, and four in ten put themselves in the gray zone—not completely for it, not decidedly against it. Can we move 4s, 5s, and 6s to 8s, 9s, and 10s? Can we change people from grudging approval to gladly accepting? We are certain the answer is yes,” says the group.

Their research found that, when asked why “couples like you” might want to marry, 58% of those surveyed said to “publicly acknowledge their love and commitment to each other.” When asked why gays and lesbians may want to marry, the respondents split between “love and commitment” and “rights and benefits.”

The group provides six lessons for talking to the middle about marriage, based on qualitative and quantitative public opinion research.

  • Support is growing but not solidified.
  • For the middle, marriage=commitment.
  • The middle isn’t yet clear on why gay couples want to marry.
  • The middle needs to hear a message of commitment, not rights.
  • The middle is looking for permission to change their minds about why gay couples marry.
  • Religion is a hurdle, not a wall.

“In order to reassure [groups in the middle who were more concerned about religion],” the report says, “and allow them to resolve their conflicting feelings in favor of marriage, it is crucial to include reaffirmation of religious liberty protections as a significant part of supporters’ message framework.”

“The success in passing marriage legislation in New York State serves as one recent example of the importance of including a strong reaffirmation of existing First Amendment protections of religious freedom, to reassure lawmakers and voters that religious leaders and churches will be protected. And when those protections  are explicitly incorporated into marriage advocates’ messages, support for marriage spikes. A 2008 study by Public Religion Research showed support jumping 14 points in a single poll with the inclusion of a religious liberty assurance.”

Charles Moran, chairman of the California Log Cabin Republicans, told USA Today that there has been a “fundamental flaw” in the way that the lesbian, gay and transgender community has framed the issue in the past and has led to 31 straight defeats in ballot initiatives across the country.

“This is a real radical way of changing the approach in communicating why gay marriage equality is important,” he said.

The “Commitment Campaign,” is already supported by Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee, and former New Jersey governor Christine Todd Whitman.

Said O’Malley, who is pushing his state’s legislature to pass marriage in 2012:

“Americans of all walks of life want their children to live in a loving, stable, committed home—protected under the law. By focusing on these values, the Commitment Campaign will help broaden support for marriage across the country and help states like Maryland pass marriage legislation in the near term.”

The new campaign comes as Human Rights Campaign launches an Internet ad campaign using African-American leaders such as former NAACP leader Julian Bond, Mo’Nique, and Newark Mayor Cory Booker. African Americans voted overwhelmingly against a 2008 California ballot initiative to legalize gay marriage.

Watch Julian Bond for Americans for Marriage Equality:

Related stories:

Group Decides Against 2012 Ballot on Prop 8

Gov. O’Malley Takes Lead in Maryland Marriage Equality Fight

Maryland Gov: Gay Marriage Bill Should Pass

Image used under the MorgueFile user license, with thanks to arashdeep.


Holly Lawrence
Holly Lawrence6 years ago

This upsets me because the Majority will say they support but when it comes to vote WHERE is that support????

William Y.
William Y6 years ago

@ Phil S. What the hell has bestiality or pedophilia have to do with Gay Marriage?

Phil Smith
Phil Smith6 years ago

Way to go Ellie D.... But you know the next step will be to get everyone to accept bestiality and pedophilia.. That is their preference.. And how about those who get off on dead bodied?? Remember Bundy??
This is just to weird...

Anne Brabson
Anne B6 years ago

Thank you, Julian Bond! You DO know something about "fighting for what is right and just"... equality! Include me in this majority!

Ameer T.
Ameer T6 years ago

It gets better.........not.

Holly Lawrence
Holly Lawrence6 years ago

Government and marriage just don't add up!

Jane Barton
Jane B6 years ago

Theodore A., when are you gonna get your message to the TBaggers? Those lunatic fanatics
should all be locked up.

Tom Y.
Tom Y6 years ago

This has the smell of a push-poll -- they extrapolate a majority because that's what they'd like to see. There are strong arguments for retaining the traditional definition of marriage: it's consistent with our hetero-normative biology, it stabilizes society and culture, it's the best arrangement by far for producing and equipping the next generation of people. These arguments stand well against their mushier opposition. They just need to be communicated widely on why marriage is between a man and a woman, to the exclusion of all others.

Maybe the gay crowd should back down on this one. It doesn't inherently attack them.

Phil Smith
Phil Smith6 years ago

I don't believe this.. Just because a statement is made does Not make it true.. Or ,, Everyone is entitled to their own thoughts and opinions ,, But they are Not entitled to make up their own set of facts...

Lynn C.
Lynn C6 years ago

Include me in the majority.