63 to 71% of American Catholics Support Same-Gender Civil Marriage
Catholics in Two New National Surveys Poll 10% Higher Than National Average and Show Faster Growing Support Than Nation at Large
WASHINGTON - Catholics for Equality, a national organization of Catholics who put their faith into ethical and effective political action on behalf of the LGBT community and their families, applauds two new national polls showing that 63 to 71% of American Catholics believe it should be legal for gay and lesbian couples to marry in civil ceremonies, like those conducted by the justice of the peace. This is 10% higher than each poll's national sample and shows a more rapid rate of acceptance by Catholics than most Americans.
In the ABC News Poll, conducted by Langer Research Associates, 53% of Americans now support civil marriage for gay and lesbian couples. This is a dramatic increase of 21 points from the same poll's 32% finding in 2004. In both the 2004 and today's polls, American Catholics show a higher rate of support and more rapid rate of acceptance. Today's report that 63% of Catholics support civil marriage marks a 23 point increase from the 2004 poll's 40% finding.
Both polls show American Catholics consistently support same gender marriage more than other Protestant faith communities and Evangelicals. Evangelicals in the ABC News poll showed only 23% supporting, and while non-Evangelical Protestants polled higher than the national average, but their 57% support fell 6 points shy of the 63% of Catholic support.
"The findings of these polls are heartening, but not surprising," said Catholics for Equality Executive Director Phil Attey. "American Catholics consistently poll higher on progressive social justice issues - including the freedom to marry for all. Our Catholic faith tradition is strongly based on social justice and our duty to take care of those who are unjustly oppressed and marginalized."
"Our families have already dealt with this issue at a personal level and Catholics largely base their moral understanding of the world through their personal relationships, not by the dictates of institutional forces; be they from our church hierarchy in Rome or conservative political groups. We see healthy, happy gay and lesbian families within our families, parishes and communities and we know love and commitment when we see it. On the issue of civil marriage equality, we Catholics support the freedom for gay and lesbian couples to marry. Period."
Catholics for Equality empowers pro-equality Catholics to put our faith into ethical and effective political action on behalf of the LGBT community and their families.
Catholics for Equality was founded in 2010 to support, educate, and mobilize Catholics in the advancement of freedom and equality at the federal, state, and local levels for our lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender family, parish and community members.
This is an electronic news service of Catholics for Equality and the Catholics for Equality Foundation.