Ginger Eisenrod is Republican through and through and has been for decades. She runs a residential and commercial real estate business in Boca Raton with her husband, just finished a term as president of a political club in Coral Springs, and describes herself as strongly pro-life on abortion.
Eisenrod is also a supporter of same-sex marriage.
"I don't see how you can be a Republican and think that the government should interfere in your decision to marry," she said. "Most of the people that I know do not want the government in their lives, much less in their bedroom."
Even though the Republican Party platform states that "the union of one man and one woman must be upheld as the national standard," a growing number of Republicans have become increasingly comfortable with and even embrace the notion of marriage between two men or two women.
Eisenrod, 67, said 10 years ago she was "definitely against it." Five years ago, she supported civil unions. In April 2011, she threw a wedding reception for two gay men. "I have definitely evolved."
As the U.S. Supreme Court prepares to release rulings, likely by the end of this week, in two pivotal cases dealing with same-sex marriage, Eisenrod illustrates the transformation taking place in South Florida and across the nation.
A Quinnipiac University poll in December found 66 percent of Florida Republicans oppose same-sex marriage. But the opposition was down 10 percentage points from seven months earlier. Same-sex marriage has much more support among Democrats, 58 percent, and independents, 47 percent.
"There's obviously still opposition among some segments of the Republican Party, but the numbers are changing," said Peter Brown, assistant director of Quinnipiac's Polling Institute.
Spinks Edwards, a 24-year-old event manager from Weston who helped with Mitt Romney's presidential campaign, said that's especially true among young Republicans.
"I would say the overwhelming majority of young Republicans support or don't fear gay marriage, don't fear same-sex equality," he said. "I don't like government telling you what to do.''
Dan Daley, 23, of Coral Springs, agreed.
“I believe in less government, and that means in all aspects, and that includes marriage,” he said. “What you’ll find particularly with people in my age range and generation is a similar feeling. You can’t tell someone that it’s illegal to love someone or not.”
Ryan Anderson, 35, elected in August 2012 to serve as the state party committeeman from Broward County, favors same-sex marriage.
Anderson, who manages business development for a security company, doesn't think it's possible to advocate limits on government regulation in the economy then turn around and support regulations on peoples' private lives.
Edwards is among the conservative supporters of same-sex marriage who argue it’s a conservative institution, packed with responsibilities such as a life-long commitment, which benefits its participants and society as a whole.
“When two lives join and become one, they’re trying to better the community. That inherently is a conservative argument,” he said. “There is definitely a strong family values argument for [same-sex marriage].”
Virginia Brooks takes comfort in the solid majority of Republicans who oppose same-sex marriage.
"We have [two-thirds] of people supporting traditional values and things making American's families stronger. I think there are a lot of Republicans who continue to feel that way, and are still in key leadership positions. I'm hoping and praying that will continue," she said.
Brooks, 68, is a Republican committeewoman and head of the Palm Beach County Faith and Freedom Coalition, formerly the Christian Coalition. "The people who are religious, who are Christian in the Republican Party, I think most of them sort of resent this idea that the world seems to be foisting upon us," she said.
Bob Wolfe, 54, said Brooks' view is common among older Republicans. "In our party, my age and above are probably just rock solid traditional marriage, just sort of the southern, white, conservative position."