American Catholics Support Gay Marriage

An interesting data point in the latest poll about American attitudes about same-sex marriage:

A new report from the Public Religion Research Institute suggests a majority of Catholics are supportive of gay and lesbian rights.

The report, which was released today, found that 43 percent of Catholics favored allowing gay and lesbian people to marry; 31 percent favored allowing them to form civil unions. 22 percent said there should be no legal recognition of a gay relationship.

Here are a few more findings from the report:

— Only 39 percent of Catholics give their church top marks for its treatment of the issue of homosexuality.

— 56 percent of Catholics believe that homosexual sex is not a sin.

— When marriage is defined as a civil marriage “like you get at city hall,” 71 percent of Catholics support it.

This is perhaps a reflection of the general trend in the United States toward broader acceptance of same-sex marriage, but it also reflects the fact that, for at least a generation now, American Catholics as a whole have parted from the Church on a whole host of social issues such as contraception, marriage after divorce,  and abortion.


FILED UNDER: Public Opinion Polls, Religion, US Politics, , , , , ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. Franklin says:

    Anecdotally, the Catholics I know are definitely more socially liberal than the Protestant types. I don’t know that any of them are pro-choice, though, but they’re mostly reasonable about the exceptions.

  2. regularron says:

    They are breaking from Holy Mother Church because the Church itself has allowed Catholic Americans to be seduced by secular dumb-ocracy. And it’s rather sad. I am not saying that two people shouldn’t be able to get a contract with the Government, but Holy Mother Church needs to come out (it won’t) forcefully and say “Hey! Marriage is a sacrament between a man, a woman and God. Not some dirtbag in a black robe”.

    This little poll should be a wake up call to the Church leadership. And a perfect time to get out there and start lobbying for the Government to get out of the marriage business.

    But until then, Hoo-Ray for Dumb-Ocracy!