Reality Check: Public opinion swaying gay rights debate
As FOX19 Now has been reporting, the United States Supreme Court's decision on same-sex marriage could forever change the legal landscape in America, but while the LGBT community may lose this potentially historic battle it's conservatives who are losing the fight over gay rights issues.
For starters, few religious freedom laws or “RFRA's” have managed to hold up against a growing public backlash: "If they're passed purely for political reasons it's fraught with danger and it's fraught with problems and Indiana is exhibit A”, says Fox19 Now Legal Analyst, Mike Allen who studied the Hoosier State's recent debacle.
Indeed, Indiana's RFRA has proven to be a public relations disaster; so much that last month the state actually hired an outside PR firm to improve its image as a result of losing tens of millions of dollars after several Fortune 500 companies cancelled events. In Arizona, Governor Jan Brewer vetoed their own RFRA but only after similar objections from major corporations.
Meanwhile, the current front-runners for their party's respective nominations for President have either softened their stance or done a complete one-eighty; Marco Rubio, a devout catholic who believes marriage should be reserved solely for men and women, has publicly gone against a long-argued anti-gay meme: that being gay is a question of choice, Rubio saying quote: “Sexual preference is something people are born with."
Back in 1996, seven in 10 people polled said they opposed same-sex marriage. That number has now fallen to four in 10, but the most telling stat of all may come from voters 18 to 29 years of age: nearly eight in 10 say they support same sex marriage illustrating that no matter what the Supreme Court rules on same-sex marriage public opinion is impacting not only gay rights laws, but lawmakers as well.