This March, the Supreme Court will hear arguments on the so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) which forbids the U.S. government from extending federal benefits to same-sex spouses.
In anticipation of these arguments, the Center for American Progress and Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders commissioned a poll asking American voters what they thing of the anti-gay law. The results are in, and Americans largely oppose it.
A majority of Americans (59 percent) oppose DOMA, 53 percent want the law repealed and 62 percent think that the law is flat out discriminatory against LGBT couples.
But two more interesting statistics from the poll really stand out: first, black voters are the racial group most opposed to the law, meaning that marriage equality outreach efforts to the black community since 2008 have finally started to take effect.
And second, even though only 53 percent of American voters want DOMA repealed, when you ask American voters whether same-sex couples deserve the marriage benefits explicitly denied by DOMA, they say yes by huge margins of 69 to 78 percent — so whether or not they oppose the law, they at least disagree with its effects on same-sex couples.
Mark our words: the Supreme Court will strike down DOMA because it furthers absolutely no government interest; several federal courts have already decided the same thing with no compelling evidence to the contrary.
What's interesting though is how the growing cultural shift in favor of marriage equality may affect future votes on marriage equality amendments in the coming state elections.