Dustin Siggins

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Gallup poll: Marriage boosts America’s economy

Dustin Siggins
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October 29, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) - On Monday, Gallup released a survey showing that married couples spend far more than any other relationship demographic in America, and that benefits the economy. The “results suggest that if more Americans are married, and fewer are single/never married, overall spending might increase," wrote Gallup. 

For the poll, Gallup asked over 130,000 Americans to state how much they had spent the previous day, not including routine bills and major purchases. "Married Americans report a daily spending average of $102, followed by $98 among those who are living in domestic partnerships, $74 by divorced Americans, $67 by those who are single and never married, and $62 by those who are widowed," reported Gallup.

The poll found that those Americans who are married “spend more than the average American in part because they have higher-than-average incomes.”

“Based on the spending habits of married Americans compared with their single counterparts who have never married, [an increase in marriage rages] could be expected to give a boost to the economy, if those marriages come from the ranks of those who are single/never married,” Gallup’s analysis concluded.

The implications of the survey are significant in a country whose marriage rate is decreasing.

However, pro-family activists have argued that the correlation between the health of the family and the economy goes even deeper than mere spending.

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Star Parker, the president of the Center for Urban Renewal and Education, wrote yesterday that it’s “false” to think that economists “can consider the challenges of our federal budget without thinking about the state of the American family, our birthrates and abortion.”

Pointing to government programs like Social Security, Medicaid, and Medicare, Parker observed that such programs “are overwhelmingly driven by the demographics of the country…Their economics are driven both by how long we live but also by how many children we have.”

“It should be clear that it is impossible to separate marriage, children and abortion from our overall economic picture. These factors are at the root of the economic picture,” she wrote. “A renaissance in American family life - restoration of marriage and children as central to our culture - and purge of the scourge of abortion - can restore a healthy future that today looks so ominous.”

According to National Review’s Kevin Williamson in 2010, consumer spending accounts for 40 percent of the American economy. Gallup’s survey indicates that not only are married Americans physically healthier, wealthier, and psychologically healthier than their demographic counterparts, they may be of greater benefit for the American economy in the here and now. 

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