According to several polls released in 2013, a majority of Americans support same-sex marriage. Responses to Gallup’s survey on the matter suggested that most Americans would actually support a nationwide ruling in favour of same-sex marriage.
However, although the United States repealed DOMA (the Defense of Marriage Act), a law that restricted benefits for married same-sex couples across the country, it’s unlikely that a law in favour of same-sex marriage would ever be instated. Instead, same-sex marriage is being decided on a state by state basis.
Some states have been forced to bring same-sex marriage into law due to court rulings that laws against same-sex marriages are unconstitutional, while rulings in other states have been left to public vote, meaning that the rights of same-sex citizens are often dictated by local bias, intolerance and political leanings. Though, a majority of states in the country do now allow same-sex marriages to take place and now we have an updated map showing marriage equality across the U.S.
The full list of states that allow for same-sex marriage are as follows: Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming.
And, it’s not a state but the District of Columbia (Washington D.C) also allows for same-sex marriage. Overall it means that over 70% of American citizens reside in places where same-sex marriage can take place.
Not that there aren’t still ways to go though, as that map shows. In Missouri, the ban on same-sex marriages was repealed but Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster appealed. He didn’t request a stay and so while St. Louis, St. Louis County, and Jackson County are providing same-sex marriage licenses, other counties are awaiting the outcome of the appeal.
In Texas meanwhile, it looks incredibly likely that the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals will repeal the state’s ban on same-sex marriage. In retaliation, a bill has been introduced by Rep. Cecil Bell (R) that sees that government employees in the state “may not recognize, grant, or enforce a same-sex marriage license” and they risk losing their salary, pension and benefits if they do so.
So, other than a few politicians souring things, it looks very likely that we’ll be posting about same-sex marriage coming to other states in the U.S very soon indeed.