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About 16 percent of African-Americans overall are in an interracial marriage, but researchers point out a gender difference: It's more common for black men to marry outside of their race than for black women.

The gender difference was the reverse in the Asian population surveyed.

"The thing that we really focus on is our values and family values," instead of their race, he said.

"We both like hard work, and we really put a focus on education." The African-American population also saw increases in interracial marriage, with the number of blacks participating in such marriages roughly tripling since 1980, the study said.

A Louisiana justice of the peace resigned late last year after refusing to marry an interracial couple.

However, studies show that support for interracial marriages is stronger than in the past, especially among the Millennial generation.

Adriano Schultz, 26, who was born in Brazil and identifies himself as having a "mixed ethnicity," met his wife, Teresa, who is white, through the site in 2006. "I don't feel as if ethnicity for us was a big issue," said Schultz, of Indiana.

He said his site, which receives 4 million unique visitors a month, has seen many interracial relationships result from people using its services.

Twice as many newlywed Asian women, about 40 percent, were married outside their race, compared with Asian men, at about 20 percent.

"We are seeing an increasingly multiracial and multiethnic country," said Andrew Cherlin, professor of public policy and sociology at Johns Hopkins University.

She still remembers her family asking if Andrew was the bartender or a family photographer. Do race and ethnicity matter when it comes to marriage? The report released Friday, which interviewed couples married for less than a year, found racial lines are blurring as more people choose to marry outside their race.

The couple married last August, and her Indian family has warmed up to her husband despite their racial differences. Apparently, race is mattering less these days, say researchers at the Pew Research Center, who report that nearly one out of seven new marriages in the U. "From what we can tell, this is the highest [percentage of interracial marriage] it has ever been," said Jeffrey Passel, a senior demographer for the Pew Research Center.

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