17 April 2016

The Supreme Court – not politicians – should decide on transgender rights


North Carolina has been at the centre of controversy over its new law that stops transgender people from using the bathroom of the gender they identify as. Bruce Springsteen, Bryan Adams and Ringo Starr top a list of entertainers who are boycotting the state in protest. PayPal and Deutsche Bank are leading objections from the corporate world. Indiana and Georgia are also facing backlashes against measures that have offended LGBT groups but which are justified by their supporters in the name of religious freedom.

We asked the First Verdict panel run by YouGov whether they thought the state-level was the appropriate level for deciding gay and transgender rights. Only 22% thought it was. The lead preference for ruling on these issues was the Supreme Court. If you add up the percentages wanting politicians to decide you get to 30%; 9% short of those who want Chief Justice John Roberts and his judicial colleagues to decide.

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And, by the way, by 55% to 39%, the First Verdict panel think “The Boss” was right to cancel the gig he had planned for the “Tar Heel” state:

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For more about Portrait of America and the methodology behind First Verdict, click here.

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Tim Montgomerie is Editor of Portrait of America