February 9, 2012
The latest polling on gay marriage by the Pew Research Center in Oct. 2011 found that the public divides almost evenly on the issue, while evangelical Christians express the greatest opposition, according to the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life. Forty-six percent of Americans favor allowing gays and lesbians to legally marry, while 44 percent are opposed. Among religious groups, white evangelical Protestants express the greatest opposition, with 74 percent. Sixty-two percent of black Protestants also oppose gay marriage, numbers that have not changed since 2010. Compared with evangelicals and black Protestants, white mainline protestants are more in favor of gay marriage, with 54 percent in support. In 2010, Catholics were almost evenly divided on the issue, but now Catholic supporters of gay marriage outnumber opponents 52 to 37 percent. Religiously unaffiliated Americans expressed the highest levels of support for gay marriage, with 72 percent.