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Majority of Americans back nationwide same-sex marriage law: poll

A majority of Americans are in favor of a national law protecting same-sex marriage, according to an Economist-YouGov poll released Thursday. 

The poll found that 51 percent of Americans back a congressional effort to codify protection for same-sex marriage into federal law, while 34 percent oppose it. 

The results came on the same day that the lead Democratic negotiator for the Respect for Marriage Act, which would create federal protections for same-sex marriage and require states to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states, announced that the Senate would table the bill until after the November midterm elections. 

Democrats overwhelmingly support an effort to protect same-sex marriage, with 72 percent indicating they strongly or somewhat support it. Half of independents and 3 in 10 Republicans said the same. 

More than 55 percent of Republicans said they oppose a federal same-sex marriage law. 

The poll also found that younger Americans are more likely to support a law than older Americans. Almost 60 percent of those under 30 and those ages 30 to 44 support a same-sex marriage law, while 50 percent of those ages 45 to 64 do. 

Americans aged 65 and older are the only age group where less than half are in support, with 44 percent backing such a law and 41 percent opposing it. 

Women were also more likely to say they support protecting same-sex marriage, with 55 percent in favor compared to 47 percent of men. 

A Morning Consult-Politico poll released Wednesday showed that almost 60 percent of voters surveyed supported protecting same-sex marriage, with more than 40 percent strongly supporting it. 

The legislative effort to pass the Respect for Marriage Act stems from a concurring opinion issued by Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas in the court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which overturned Roe v. Wade, in June. 

In his opinion, which is nonbinding, Thomas suggested the court should review other cases like Griswold v. Connecticut, which protected the right to access contraceptives, and Obergefell v. Hodges, which protected same-sex marriage. 

The Respect for Marriage Act passed the House in July with some bipartisan support. 

The Economist-YouGov poll was conducted among 1,500 U.S. adults from Sept. 10 to 13. The margin of error was about 3 percentage points.

Tags Clarence Thomas Economist/YouGov poll Obergefell v. Hodges Respect for Marriage Act same-sex marriage bill same-sex marriage protection

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