Current Affairs

Marriage equality ‘not a priority’ for US voters

Edmund Broch April 19, 2012
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Equal marriage is not top among the concerns of voters for the 2012 presidential elections in the United States, a new survey has found.

The Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, which carried out the survey on the 4th and the 5th of April, said that only 28 per cent of those polled considered marriage equality as “very important” in determining their vote. Rather, what concerned them was the economy, and relatedly, jobs, which topped the list at 86 and 84 percents respectively. Health-care followed closely at 74 percent.

The same survey found that where health and education formed the primary concern, voters favoured Mr Obama by double-digits, whereas those for whom the budget deficit was more important favoured Mr Romney by a 19-point margin.

Commenting on these findings, the president of Human Rights Campaign, Joe Solmonese, thought the news was good for LGBT equality. He noted in a statement: “Fair-minded people are increasingly aware that extending rights, benefits, and protections to their LGBT neighbors strengthens the communities they live and work in. It’s important to remember that so much of what we’re fighting for — marriage equality, workplace protections, fair treatment when our loved ones are hospitalized — contributes to a strengthening of the issues voters care about the most… This latest data reinforces the fact that supporting LGBT equality is not a divisive wedge issue.”

The findings seem consistent with the 2011 Gallup poll, which found that 53 percent of Americans supported marriage equality. A Greenberg Quinian Rosner poll, according to the Human Rights Commission, found that more than four in five people of faith (i.e., roughly 85%) said that their religious belief would lead them to the conclusion that gay and trans people should be subject to equal treatment under the law.

Related topics: Americas, gay marriage, marriage equality, Pew Research Centre, US, US Election 2012

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