Florida voters move toward freedom to marry support in new poll

new poll from Public Policy Polling shows that Florida voters, like much of the country, are quickly shifting their views on the freedom to marry toward majority approval. The poll demonstrates that 42 percent of voters surveyed approve of the freedom to marry, representing a sizeable shift since last September, when only 37 percent supported the freedom to marry. 

Gains among black voters in the state are particularly evident. Whereas only 23 percent of black Florida residents supported marriage for same-sex couples back in September, the new poll shows that 49 percent of black voters would support the freedom to marry. The state has also seen significant voters among Democratic voters, with 61 percent of those surveyed saying they supported marriage for all couples. 

More and more Florida residents are also beginning to see the need for official, legal relationship recognition for same-sex couples. According to the Public Policy Polling results:

72% of Florida voters support either gay marriage or civil unions, with only 26% opposed to any form of legal recognition. Even 61% of Republicans support some form of legal recognition for same sex couples. 

The new polling is consistent with public opinion from a number of states across the country. Just last week, we saw significant gains in Minnesota, Missouri, Pennsylvania, and Michigan - and polls from Maryland and Washington have also demonstrated record support for the freedom to marry.

Nationally, the freedom to marry has also seen historic support in recent weeks. A national CNN poll from last week indicated that 54 percent of the U.S. population now approves of bringing an end to the exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage. 

The polling is evidence that each and every day, Americans are taking the time to consider why the freedom to marry is so important. It is clear that as momentum builds for the freedom to marry nationwide, people are stepping back to scrutinize their own views on marriage. Clearly, a record number of Americans are coming to the conclusion that by supporting marriage for all couples, they are supporting their friends, family members, and neighbors.

We must continue to actively engage diverse cross-sections of the population in conversations about why marriage matters to same-sex couples and their families. By investing time and money in the marriage campaign, we can more fully develop a national climate for victory, where the freedom to marry for all is a reality.