Post submitted by former HRC Communications Campaign Director Brandon Lorenz

Today, HRC released new polling to show broad support for the newly introduced Equality Act in swing districts across the country. The Equality Act – which was introduced with a record number of original cosponsors -- would ensure permanent non-discrimination protections for LGBT Americans.

“People across the country have embraced the very simple idea behind the Equality Act that everyone should live free from fear of discrimination and have a fair chance to earn a living and provide for their families, including gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people,” said JoDee Winterhof, Senior Vice President of Policy and Political Affairs. “Strong support from voters in Republican-held districts is another sign that members of Congress who won’t support the Equality Act risk being left behind next November.”

The polling finds freshman Carlos Curbelo tied and freshmen David Young and Cresent Hardy trail narrowly in a hypothetical re-election matchup with a Democrat. A significant percentage of the members’ current supporters in their districts report that they would be less likely to support their members for opposing the Equality Act, 14 percent of Young’s current supporters, 18 percent of Curbelo’s current supporters and 13 percent of Hardy’s current supporters. Those margins are large enough to put the incumbents behind a challenger by 5 to 8 percent. While Congressman Garrett and Dold start ahead –18 percent of their supporters said they would be less likely to support them -- a margin big enough to reverse their leads and put Dold and Garrett behind a challenger.

Meanwhile, a 55 percent majority of Democrats in Congressman Dan Lipinski’s district say they’d be less likely to support him if he opposed the Equality Act.

Previously, HRC released two rounds of national polling that found bipartisan public support for a federal non-discrimination bill like the Equality Act. In March, HRC’s polling showed that nearly two-thirds of LGBT people have experienced discrimination in their lives. In June, 59 percent said they would be less likely to support a candidate for President who opposed a federal LGBT non-discrimination bill.

The Equality Act would help address the lack of clear, fully-inclusive non-discrimination protections in 31 states across the country where LGBT Americans can get legally married but remain at risk of losing their job or being denied services for who they are who they love.  

Highlights from the polls by district:

#IA03 By a margin of 48 to 26, voters support passing the Equality Act

·         Freshman David Young trails a hypothetical Democratic challenger by 1 point and with underwater personal favorability ratings. Separately, 14 percent of his current supporters said they would be less likely to vote for him if he opposed the Equality Act.

#IL03 By a margin of 56 to 28, voters support passing the Equality Act

·         Incumbent Dan Lipinski leads a hypothetical Republican by a significant margin in his Democratic district. But 55 percent of Democrats said they would be less likely to support Lipinski, who has a history of opposing LGBT equality, if he opposed the Equality Act. Overall, 34 percent of his current supporters said they would be less likely to vote for him if he opposes the Equality Act.

#IL10 By a margin of 49 to 28, voters support passing the Equality Act

·         Incumbent Republican Bob Dold leads a hypothetical rematch with Brad Schneider by four points. Overall, 18 percent of his current supporters would be less likely to vote for Dold if he opposed the Equality Act. A plurality of undecided voters – 29 percent – also said they would be less likely to support Dold if he opposes the Equality Act.

#FL26 By a margin of 52 to 24, voters support passing the Equality Act

·         Freshman Republican Carlos Curbelo starts out tied in a hypothetical matchup with Democrat Annette Taddeo. Overall, 18 percent of his current supporters would be less likely to vote for Dold if he opposed the Equality Act. A plurality of undecided voters – 29 percent – also said they would be less likely to support Curbelo if he opposes the Equality Act.

#NJ05 By a margin of 55 to 22, voters support passing the Equality Act

·         Incumbent Republican Scott Garrett -- who recently made news for his anti-LGBT comments -- starts out with a lead in a hypothetical matchup with Democrat Josh Gottheimer, but is under 50 percent with a slightly negative favorability rating. And 18 percent of his current supporters said they would be less likely to support Garrett if he opposes the Equality Act.

#NV04 By a margin of 47 to 31, voters support passing the Equality Act

·         Freshman Republican Cresent Hardy starts out behind a generic Democrat in a hypothetical re-election with mixed favorability ratings and low name ID. Separately, 13 percent of his current supporters said they would be less likely to vote for Hardy if he opposes the Equality Act.  

#WI01 By a margin of 46 to 23, voters support passing the Equality Act

·         Incumbent Republican Paul Ryan heads into 2016 with a lead against a generic Democrat in a hypothetical re-election. But 11 percent of his current supporters said they would be less likely to vote for Ryan if he opposes the Equality Act. And a 27 percent plurality of undecided voters said they would be more likely to oppose a candidate who did not support the Equality Act.


Filed under: Community, Polling

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