Swing of support for gay marriage ahead of Supreme Court arguments

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March 25, 2013, 4:50 pm
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(NECN/NBC News: Steve Handelsman) - As the Supreme Court takes up same-sex marriage this week, there's a stunning swing in its acceptance.

A decade ago, one-third of Americans backed gay marriage.

Today, it's 58-percent in favor.

President Obama changed his mind on the subject, saying "our journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law" in his second inaugural address.

Hillary Clinton agreed last week.

Mitt Romney's stand against gay marriage surely hurt him in November.

"White evangelicals form a strong part of the Republican party base - and they are overwhelmingly opposed. But everybody else who is not a white evangelical Christian, by 20 plus points, support freedom to marry," points out Obama campaign pollster Joel Benenson.

Just nine states and the District of Columbia allow gay marriage; 38 states ban it.
Despite the snow, people are camped outside the Supreme Court to get inside for arguments Tuesday.

Chief Justice Roberts set aside a seat for his cousin, a lesbian who wants justices to find gay marriage bans unconstitutional.

Kris Perry and Sandy Stier, along with Paul Katami and Jeff Zarrillo, sued to overturn California's Prop 8 ban.

Kris and Sandy raised four boys and want to marry.

"We love each other. We're a family. We want to experience the same kind of societal acceptance and inclusion," Stier says.

California's gay marriage ban will be reviewed on Tuesday.

On Wednesday the Defense of Marriage Act that blocks federal benefits to same sex couples married in states that allow gay marriage will be before the court.

Tags: Supreme Court, gay marriage, Defense of Marriage Act, prop 8, Steve Handelsman, NBC news, kris perry, sandy stier, paul katami , jeff zarrillo
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