Prop 8 Trial Day 2: Will Marriage Equality Increase The Divorce Rate?

Posted on January 12th, 2010 by Katherine Franke

Nancy CottNancy Cott, a historian of marriage and the family from Harvard, is testifying today (and yesterday) in Perry v. Schwarzenegger about the history and purposes of marriage.  If you’re following the live blogging of her testimony you’d be getting an intro course on marriage.  It’s quite good.

But at one point this morning, on cross examination by the pro-Prop 8 lawyers, she was asked whether she thought allowing same sex couples to marry would increase the divorce rate.  She answered that what she knew of her own state, Massachusetts, where same sex couples can marry, they have a very low divorce rate.  Too bad she didn’t also have at her fingertips Nate Silver’s new study showing higher divorce rates in states that don’t allow same sex couples to marry.

Divorce Rates

I’ll have to ask my stat-smart colleague Nate Persily to check out the numbers.  But looks like a “Ha!  Gottcha moment”!


  1. Gender & Sexuality Law Blog » Blog Archive » Prop 8 Trial Day 2: Will Marriage Equality Increase The Divorce Rate?

  2. Gender & Sexuality Law Blog » Blog Archive » Prop 8 Trial Day 2: Will Marriage Equality Increase The Divorce Rate?

  3. good topic


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