In terms of gay marriage, Arizona's conservative image is about to take a hit -- that's according to a statistician who claims the trend in public opinion is shifting in favor of allowing gays to wed at a more rapid pace than ever.
According to a study conducted by Hank Pellissier, a statistician at the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies, majority public support for gay marriage will be achieved in Arizona by 2015.
In his report, Pellissier shows growing support for gay marriage by about 1 percent of the electorate per year in most states, including Arizona. He cites a 44 percent vote against a ban on gay marriage in 2008 as the basis for his figure.
Shockingly, Arizona is in the middle of the road when it comes to projected majority support of gay marriage.
States like Oregon, New York, and Delaware will reach majority support by 2012, while other states -- primarily those of the Southern variety -- won't achieve majority support for more than 20 years.
Mississippi, according to Pellissier, won't achieve majority support until 2035.
The huge shift in public opinion is stalled by a certain group: religious people.
Recent GOP heavyweights who have declared that gay marriage is either valid, or not worth fighting about, include Laura Bush, Dick Cheney, Glenn Beck, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, and Cindy and Meghan McCain. Many Libertarian and "Tea Party" members are equally supportive of gay marriage, or at least indifferent. So... who's resisting?
Religious folks. Mormons, conservative Catholics, evangelical fundamentalists. But they're slowly getting outnumbered by their own voting children: a New York Times/CBS News poll revealed that 57% of the populace under 40 years old is supportive of gay marriage.
Like it or not, Arizonans, the days of Mr. and Mr. Smith are lurking on the horizon.
Check out all of Pellissier's projections here.
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