Will Support For Equality Slow?

Jun 28 2013 @ 8:29am

Nate Cohn expects so:

When people discuss the inexorable rise of support for gay marriage, they talk about it like racial integration. The supporters of Jim Crowe were routed: it became impossible to publicly support segregation, and the opposition eventually died or flipped. But there’s another possibility: that gay marriage is somewhat more like abortion, where an entrenched minority remained steadfastly opposed, largely for moral and religious reasons. So far, the data suggests that gay marriage will be more like abortion, at least for a while.

Evangelical and Republican opposition to same sex marriage hasn’t budged.

According to Pew Research, Republican support for gay marriage has only crept up by a net-7 points since 2003, from 22-71 to 25-67. White evangelicals have moved a little quicker, but they still oppose by a 75-19 margin—a net-15 point improvement from 2003. In comparison, the public as a whole has shifted 30 points toward gay marriage—despite being held back by Republicans and evangelicals. Generational change isn’t helping very much, either. Just 30 percent of 18-34 year old evangelicals support gay marriage, which isn’t a huge improvement from the 25 percent who supported it in 2003. Young Republicans are a little more supportive of gay marriage than young evangelicals, but they still oppose gay marriage by 15 points, 39-54.