HRC and Equality Michigan today released new polling data from Hart Research Associates one year out from the 2018 midterm elections, showing that likely voters across Michigan overwhelmingly support LGBTQ-inclusive policies and are less likely to vote for a candidate who does not.

HRC is on the ground in Michigan, a priority state through HRC Rising -- the largest and earliest grassroots expansion in its 37-year history.

“A year out from the midterm elections, the data clearly show that Michiganders overwhelmingly support LGBTQ equality,” said JoDee Winterhof, Senior Vice President for Policy and Political Affairs. Just as they have in North Carolina last year and Alabama last month, Michigan voters will stand up to reject candidates who target LGBTQ people. These polling results make it clear -- hate is not a winning political strategy.”

“The polling confirms what we see and hear all around the state - Michiganders have already evolved on issues of fairness and equality,” Steph White, Executive Director of Equality Michigan. Furthermore, they are tired of discrimination holding back our state's economic progress, and are impatient for lawmakers to catch up. Candidates who continue to latch on to LGBTQ discrimination to stir up votes are likely to find their campaign stunted in 2018.

Following the defeat of anti-LGBTQ politicians like former North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory and Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore, the new polling makes clear that voters in Michigan resoundingly reject elected officials who attack and discriminate against the LGBTQ community. Almost half of voters (47 percent) say they would feel less favorably toward an official who opposes LGBTQ equality, versus 7 percent who say it would make them more favorable toward the official. This 40 point margin demonstrates just how toxic it is to attack LGBTQ people for perceived political gain. Voters will no longer tolerate discrimination against their family, friends and neighbors.

Michigan voters also oppose the Trump-Pence administration's efforts to roll back LGBTQ equality, with 56 percent opposing Trump’s efforts to ban qualified transgender people from serving in the United States armed forces. By a wide 24 point margin, voters also oppose laws granting business owners a dangerous license to discriminate.

Overall, Michigan voters support LGBTQ equality and protections for LGBTQ people such as banning so-called “conversion therapy” and prohibiting discrimination against prospective LGBTQ parents and kids in foster care and adoption. Other key findings from the poll:

  • 73 percent of Michigan voters support LGBTQ employees having access to paid family and medical leave, without fear of losing a paycheck or their job for the birth or adoption of a child, or to care for a sick family member.
  • 59 percent of Michigan voters support allowing LGBTQ people to legally adopt children.
  • 63 percent of Michigan voters support making it illegal to discriminate against LGBTQ people in employment.
  • 59 percent of Michigan voters support making it illegal to discriminate against LGBTQ people in housing.

Michigan voters also support passing the Equality Act by a 59 to 21 percent margin. This crucial federal legislation would provide consistent and explicit non-discrimination protections for LGBTQ people across key areas of life, including employment, housing, credit, education, public spaces and services, federally funded programs, and jury service.

In July, HRC announced HRC Rising, the earliest, largest grassroots expansion in its 37-year history ahead of 2018 midterms. This historic campaign to win equality in states from coast-to-coast, resist the politics of hate, fight anti-LGBTQ legislation, and fuel pro-equality candidates and initiatives, will include six priority states: Arizona, Michigan, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. Ahead of the 2018 midterm elections, HRC has identified more than 965,000 Michiganders as likely “Equality Voters” — those who are strong supporters of policies that advance LGBTQ equality, including marriage equality and other measures prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.

Read the full polling memo here.

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