Today, the HRC congratulated the pro-equality, pro-choice, pro-commonsense gun control nominees after the Virginia Legislative Primary Elections.

“We’re excited to congratulate all of Virginia’s pro-equality, pro-choice, pro-commonsense gun control candidates on their primary victories tonight,” said Narissa Rahaman, HRC Senior Regional Field Organizer. “For too long, the anti-equality leadership in the General Assembly has used LGBTQ people as political pawns and blocked any pro-equality legislation from making it to the Governor’s desk. With strong majorities of Virginians on the side of LGBTQ rights, HRC will work hard to turn out the 1.2 million Equality Voters in Virginia and ensure Speaker Kirk Cox, Majority Chairman Tim Hugo and anti-equality politicians are out of a job come November.”

In 2019, Virginia Speaker of the House Kirk Cox, Majority Chairman Tim Hugo and other leaders in the House of Delegates, refused to bring commonsense LGBTQ non-discrimination protections up for a vote in committee. The two bills, HB 2677 and HB 2067, would add these crucial, commonsense protections for LGBTQ Virginians in housing and public employment, respectively. Similar bills have passed the Virginia Senate several years in a row, including this year, with bipartisan support. According to recent polling, both measures have overwhelming support amongst Virginians, including a majority of Virginia Republicans. Over the past several elections, HRC has successfully elected pro-equality champions at every level of Virginia’s state government and will continue to engage in this important work in the weeks and months leading up to this November’s election.

In February of 2018, The Tarrance Group, a Republican polling firm that has done extensive work in Virginia and for national Republican candidates, conducted a poll of “base” Republican voters, specifically voters who have participated in at least two out of four of the last Republican primaries in the Commonwealth. They found:  

  • 55% of Republican voters believe it “should be against the law to discriminate in housing against someone who is gay or transgender.”  Only 35% opposed.
  • 59% of Republican voters believe it “should be against the law to discriminate in public employment against someone who is gay or transgender.” Only 32% opposed.  

Additionally, Mason-Dixon, a pollster with a long track record of work in Virginia as well, asked about the same issues in a January 2019 statewide poll. While finding broad support amongst the greater electorate, the pollster again found a majority of Republican voters support equality. They found:  

  • 53% of Republicans said they would support “legislation at the General Assembly this year that would update Virginia’s nondiscrimination laws to protect gay and transgender people from discrimination in housing.” Only 38% opposed.  
  • 63% of Republicans said they would support “legislation at the General Assembly this year that would update Virginia’s nondiscrimination laws to protect gay and transgender people from discrimination in employment.” Only 30% opposed.

Filed under: State & Local Advocacy

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