Updated: Thursday, 22 May 2014 03:38 | By Agence France-Presse

Support for gay marriage in US hits 55 percent

Fifty-five percent of Americans now approve of same-sex marriage, the highest level ever, according to a Gallup public opinion poll released Wednesday.


Support for gay marriage in US hits 55 percent

A same-sex couple gets married at the Oakland County courthouse in Pontiac, Michigan, on March 22, 2014 - by Bill Pugliano

Recalling how support for marriage equality broke the 50-percent mark in 2012, Gallup said its latest result was "further evidence that support for gay marriage has solidified above the majority level."

Support was strongest among young adults at 78 percent. Regionally, opposition remains strong in southern states, where Gallup said advocates of traditional marriage are in the majority.

Back in 1996, when Gallup first posed the question, 68 percent of Americans opposed same-sex marriage, and only 27 percent of respondents came out in favor.

Same-sex marriage now is legal in 18 states plus the District of Columbia, with Oregon, Idaho and Pennsylvania the latest to join the growing list as a result of judicial rulings.

In a landmark decision in June last year, the US Supreme Court ruled that wedded gay and lesbian couples are entitled to the same benefits and protections as their heterosexual counterparts.

Gallup said its findings -- posted on its www.gallup.com website -- were based on telephone interviews with 1,028 adults between May 8 and 11, giving a margin of error of plus or minus five percentage points.

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