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New Survey also finds 81% Support Freedom of People to Follow their Beliefs About Marriage at Work and in Business
NASHVILLE, TN – Today, Family Research Council (FRC) and a coalition of pro-family organizations released the results of a commissioned national survey conducted by WPA Opinion Research showing that 61 percent of Americans agree that “states and citizens should remain free to uphold marriage as the union of a man and a woman and the Supreme Court should not force all 50 states to redefine marriage.” The survey also found that 53 percent of Americans agree that marriage should be defined only as a union between one man and one woman.
An overwhelming majority (81 percent) of Americans agree that government should “leave people free to follow their beliefs about marriage as they live their daily lives at work and in the way they run their businesses.” The survey was released only days after Aaron and Melissa Klein, former owners of Sweet Cakes in Gresham, Oregon, were told by the state of Oregon that they face fines of up to $150,000 for declining to bake a same-sex “wedding” cake. In Washington state, Barronelle Stutzman, who is a florist, is being threatened with the loss of her home, her family business, and her life savings at the hands of the state because she declined to participate in a same-sex "wedding" ceremony.
Family Research Council President Tony Perkins made the following comments during a news conference today at the National Religious Broadcasters Convention:
“This survey tells us that the American people will not accept marriage redefinition by judicial fiat. Americans have not reached a ‘broad social consensus’ on the redefinition of marriage. Until and unless they do, judges should not impose on them something that will only cause deep social division. We continue to hear the narrative of those seeking to redefine our most basic social institution that 37 states have same-sex ‘marriage.’ However, the WPA survey’s strong majority continues to reflect the fact that 30 states have upheld natural marriage at the ballot box compared to only three states that have voted to redefine marriage.
“We don’t have to look far into history to see what happens when the Court preempts broad social consensus as it did four decades ago when the Supreme Court imposed abortion on demand on all 50 states, declaring the issue ‘resolved.’ The Supreme Court failed to silence the debate over abortion then and the Court will fail again now should it redefine marriage, an issue which could prove even more contentious.
“The marriage debate will only intensify as the American people realize they will be required to surrender their fundamental right to live their lives according to their beliefs. The evidence will mount as families are driven from their businesses and even homes as the result of crippling government imposed fines designed to force them to deny their faith.
“Cultural elites may succeed in convincing judges to strip away the livelihoods of people like Aaron and Melissa Klein, Jack Phillips, Barronelle Stutzman, and others but the elites face a losing battle in the court of public opinion. But 81 percent of the American people stand with those who want to live freely in accordance with their moral beliefs, and not with a government threatening to fine and punish them,” concluded Perkins.
To review the results of the survey, click here: http://downloads.frc.org/EF/EF15B71.pdf