INSTITUTE INDEX: Progress and resistance on Southern marriage equality

(Image by Mike Licht via Flickr.)

Number of states where marriage equality is now the law after the U.S. Supreme Court this week declined to review lower-court decisions invalidating same-sex marriage bans in seven states including Virginia: 26

Number of additional states in the South where the Court's action creates precedent requiring heightened scrutiny for same-sex exclusions: 3*

As a result of these actions, number of states where there will be full marriage equality in the near future: 35

Percent of same-sex couples in the U.S. who will soon live in states where they can marry: 70

Date on which Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) signed an executive order directing state agencies to comply with same-sex marriage: 10/7/2014

Date on which West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin issued a statement saying that his state would also comply with the rulings allowing same-sex marriage: 10/9/2014

Number of weeks experts expect it to take for the issue to be resolved in South Carolina, where officials are continuing to fight marriage equality: several

Date on which attorneys for North Carolina's Republican legislative leaders, House Speaker Thom Tillis and Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger, filed a brief in federal court seeking to preserve the state's ban on same-sex marriage: 10/10/2014

Year in which the National Organization for Marriage, the group chaired by one of the attorneys hired by Tillis and Berger, was added to the Southern Poverty Law Center's list of "anti-gay groups" that "pump out demonizing propaganda aimed at homosexuals": 2010

Estimated amount in spending that extending marriage to same-sex couples would generate for North Carolina's economy: $64.4 million

For South Carolina's economy: $25.2 million

Rank of the South among U.S. regions where polls show the lowest support for same-sex marriage: 1

According to a recent survey, percent of Southerners who favor legalizing gay marriage in their state: 34

Percentage-point increase that represents over last year: 6

* North Carolina, South Carolina, and West Virginia

(Click on figure to go to source.)