Exit polls have a lot to say about the role LGBT issues plyed in the election, and on how President Obama’s support for marriage equality might have resonated with the electorate.
Lesbian, gay and bisexual voters sided heavily with Obama, for example, helping to propel him to a commanding win. Exit polls conducted for The New York Times and other media outlets indicated that 5% of voters were gay, lesbian or bisexual. (Voters weren’t asked whether they are transgender.) Of those, 76% voted for Obama. While that number is high, it’s also a six-percentage-point increase over the 2008 election for the president.
Where marriage equality was on the ballot, exit polls offer insight into whether it helped or hurt the president. The Associated Press reports that exit polls in Maryland, where voters approved legalizing same-sex marriage, show those who sided with equality broke strongly for Obama, while those opposed joined Romney. It was Obama and marriage equality that prevailed.