Forty-two percent of Americans live in states that in some form recognize the unions of gay and lesbian couples.
The survey released by the gay rights group Equality Matters shows that 19 states and the District of Columbia have approved laws that recognize gay unions.
Gay marriage is legal in five states – Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont – and the District of Columbia, covering 7 percent of the American population. Another 7 states – Hawaii, Illinois, California, Nevada, New Jersey, Oregon and Washington – offer gay couples similar rights to marriage with civil unions or domestic partnerships. Nearly 30 percent of Americans live in these 13 states.
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