A majority of Trump voters support LGBT rights protections… but voted for a President who will dismantle them
A majority of Trump voters support LGBT rights protections even though his administration is likely to dismantle them, polling shows.
Polling conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research, released by the Human Rights Campaign, showed that voters who opted to put Donald Trump and Mike Pence in the White House don’t actually agree with them on LGBT rights.
The polling found that 69 percent of voters – including a 55 percent majority of Trump voters – support the Equality Act, which would broaden LGBT rights protections by introducing federal anti-discrimination safeguards.
61 percent of voters nationally also now support marriage equality, compared to 50 percent after 2012.
The news suggests Trump may face a backlash from his own supporters if he fulfils his pledge to sign the First Amendment Defence Act, which would permit businesses to discriminate against LGBT people on the grounds of religion.
In addition to his pledge to sign FADA, senior Republicans have reportedly received assurances that the President-elect will revoke Obama’s executive orders on LGBT rights, which extended some anti-discrimination protections to LGBT federal contractors.
The polling also reveals that less than half of voters heard anything about Trump and Pence’s stance on LGBT rights, raising questions about the media’s lack of scrutiny during the election campaign.
Only 44 percent recall hearing something about Donald Trump’s and Mike Pence’s position on “gay rights and LGBT issues”.
No question on LGBT rights was asked in any of the Presidential or Vice Presidential debates.
No mainstream outlets covered Trump’s pledge to sign the First Amendment Defence Act in September, despite coverage from LGBT outlets including PinkNews.
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Meanwhile few mainstream outlets brought up or challenged Pence’s extreme anti-LGBT views, despite national controversy over his 2015 decision to sign an anti-LGBT law while Governor of Indiana. During the entire campaign, no interviewer asked Pence about his alleged past support for ‘gay’ cure therapy – a topic on which he was able to maintain silence for five months.
Democratic VP candidate Tim Kaine, who himself missed an opportunity to challenge Pence on his record of intolerance during the Vice Presidential debate, blamed the moderator for not directly asking about it.
He said: “It is the case that there was no question that was asked that dealt with Governor Pence or just the issue of LGBT equality.”
“Hillary and I are strongly for LGBT equality, including marriage equality, and a Trump-Pence ticket is deeply against it, especially Governor Pence.
“I viewed this as fundamentally a debate that was about Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, not about Tim Kaine and Mike Pence. So I went in with the thought that, look, Hillary Clinton is the top of the ticket, and Donald Trump is the top of the ticket, and that’s where I’m going to focus. That was my goal and I think we succeeded at doing it.”
HRC said: “We still have a lot to learn about the 2016 race, but we do know that it is no longer politically advantageous to campaign on an anti-equality platform”