Even as the Republican Party continues to court the dwindling number of Christofascists in the party base by way of a continual stream of anti-LGBT legislation, a new Gallup poll shows that for the first time a majority of Americans over age 65 support same sex marriage. Not that this development will end the GOP's self-prostitution to the hate-filled and ignorance embracing "godly folks." I remain stunned that the Republican Party refuses to expand its base either racially or in terms of its treatment of sexual minorities. Sooner or later - hopefully, as soon as November 2016 - this misogyny will catch up with the GOP in a major way. Gallup lays out the new poll findings which , in my view, ought to be a major wake up call to anti-gay Republicans. Here are highlights:
Sixty-one percent of Americans say that marriages between same-sex couples should be recognized by the law as valid, consistent with the 58% and 60% recorded in 2015. Last year's Supreme Court decision made same-sex marriage legal nationwide -- but the issue remains contentious at state and local levels, among religious groups and within the Republican Party.
With six months left until Election Day, the issue of gay marriage has been less prominent this year than in the past few presidential elections. The Supreme Court's ruling in 2015 makes the issue somewhat moot, and both Democratic candidates support it. Meanwhile, Republican front-runner Donald Trump has been fairly muted on the issue compared with some his GOP opponents, particularly those who backed a constitutional amendment defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman. While Trump says he opposes same-sex marriage, the issue does not appear on his campaign website. . . .
Four in 10 rank-and-file Republicans say same-sex marriage should be legally recognized. This is the highest support on record and is more than twice as high as the 16% found in 1996. The GOP remains the least supportive of gay marriage among the three main party groups, as strong majorities of independents (65%) and Democrats (79%) say such marriages should be recognized as valid under the law.
Support for gay marriage has consistently been highest among adults younger than 30 years, but support declines with each step up the age scale. At the same time, Americans in all four age groups have become more supportive since 1996.
This year marks the first time in Gallup's trend that the majority of adults aged 65 and older said gay marriage should be legal. Fifty-three percent of Americans aged 65 and older now support same-sex marriage. That is still well below the 83% support among 18- to 29-year-olds, the highest support among the age groups.
The percentage of Republicans saying gay marriage is a pivotal voting issue for them has fallen to 18% -- down from 27% as recently as last year. Among Democrats, the issue has become more important, climbing to 32% after registering 26% a year ago and just 10% in 2008.
Americans' heightened approval of gay marriage this year makes the issue a fairly straightforward one for the remaining Democratic presidential candidates. Not only do the vast majority of fellow Democrats agree with their stance, but they also have little to fear on the issue from the general electorate.
Despite their wailing and all the flying spittle, the Christofascists have lost this battle even as they fight a rear guard action against increasing LGBT acceptance by society. I continue to believe that history will see the opponents of LGBT equality in a light similar to how segregationists are viewed by most of society - at least outside of GOP circles and the increasingly ugly GOP base.