Is there an Obama effect on gay marriage?
President Obama’s embrace of gay marriage earlier this month may be causing a huge shift on African-Americans on the issue.
In an ABC News-Washington Post poll released earlier this week, 59 percent of blacks said they supported same-sex marriage, up from 41 percent before the president’s announcement. The authors of the ABC/Post poll did not that this result is preliminary, as there was a small number of blacks sampled.
Polls by the Public Policy Polling group have some similar surges of support among blacks in Maryland and Pennsylvania.
This dynamic could reshape gay marriage debates in the future. Thirty-one states have passed gay marriage bans, and in some, such as California and North Carolina, many African-Americans back them, according to exit poll and close looks at the voting data by county.
There is little evidence of a backlash among black voters or voters overall towards Obama taking this stance. Polls show about 90 percent of blacks still plan to back Obama, a number that has been consistent throughout his tenure as president. And surveys by a number of news organizations, including NBC News, show the majority of voters overall also were unaffected by Obama’s stance.