Proponents of legal recognition for same-sex partnerships had a big decade between 2000 and 2010, and new U.S. Census Bureau figures reflect that shift. The 2010 census was the first to allow gay couples to list themselves as married — a status that wasn't legally available before 2004 — but the number of recorded same-sex households of all sorts surged, according to initial estimates released in August. While the bureau's new "preferred estimate" of gay households released Tuesday marks a sizable drop from those August numbers, it's still a "tremendous increase" over previous figures with wide-ranging implications, says Brian Moulton at the Human Rights Campaign. These gay couples aren't "suddenly popping out of nowhere," either, he adds. The new data reflect the "degree people feel comfortable coming out on the census form." Here's a look at the numbers:
Number of households headed by a same-sex couple in 2010
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Number of same-sex households in the Census Bureau's initial August estimate
Number of same-sex households in 2000 Census
Percentage increase in same-sex households from 2000 to 2010
Number of states (including Washington, D.C.) that allowed gay marriage in 2010
Number of states that allowed gay marriage in 2000
Number of same-sex households where the gay couple says they're married
Percentage of those couples who are legally married, according to Williams Institute estimates
Number of married households where the gay couple is male (49 percent)
Number of married households where the gay couple is female (51 percent)
Number of same-sex households where the gay couple is not married
Percentage of U.S. households headed by gay couples
Number of opposite-sex households per every 1 same-sex household
Percentage of Massachusetts same-sex households where gay couple is legally married
Percentage of Maine same-sex households where gay couple is legally married
Number of same-sex households in North Dakota
Number of same-sex households in Washington, D.C.
Number of same-sex households in California
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