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Measurement Error in the Relationship Status of Same-Sex Couples in the 2009 American Community Survey

Matt Virgile
Component ID: #ti1442696491

In the American Community Survey, same-sex couples living together may describe their relationship as either "€œhusband or wife" or "œunmarried partner." Some of these couples report their relationship differently from others, despite living in the same objective conditions. Past literature finds that how same-sex couples define and report their relationship depends on both legal and sociological factors; as a result, far more same-sex couples report their relationship as "husband or wife" than are legally married. Using 2009 ACS 1-year internal data and logistic regression we test three hypotheses: same-sex couples are more likely to report as "husband or wife" (as opposed to "€œunmarried partner") when they (1) reside in a state recognizing same-sex marriage, (2) live with their own children, and (3) respond to the initial mailout form.

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