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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Almost 150,000 GLBT Couples Report Being Married

The Associated Press announced yesterday that almost 150,000 same-sex couples reported being in married relationships last year, much more than the number of actual weddings and civil unions, according to the first U.S. census figures released on same-sex marriages.

About 27 percent of the estimated 564,743 total gay and lesbian couples in the United States said they were in a relationship similar to that of straight couples' husband and wife, according to the Census Bureau tally. That's compared with 91 percent of the 61.3 million total opposite-sex couples who reported being married.

A consultant to the Census Bureau estimated there were about 100,000 official same-sex weddings, civil unions and domestic partnerships in 2008.

Analysts said the disparities are likely a reflection of same-sex couples in committed relationships who would get married if they could in their states. The numbers are also an indicator of the count to come in the 2010 census, a tally that could stir a state-by-state fight over same-sex marriage, gay adoption and other legal rights.

Nationwide, about 56 percent of the 149,956 total same-sex marriages in the census survey last year were lesbian couples. Same-sex spouses were reported in every state; specific breakdowns weren't immediately available.

The numbers come as the Census Bureau prepares to make an official count of same-sex marriages, unions and partnerships for the first time in the 2010 head count, after the Obama administration's decision to provide the numbers under pressure from gay rights groups.

Source: Associated Press

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