Poll: Most Americans side with LGBT people in "religious freedom" disputes

"America's rising electorate stands firmly on the side of basic fairness for all people"

By Joanna Rothkopf
Published April 9, 2015 5:30PM (EDT)
           (<a href="http://www.shutterstock.com/gallery-149512p1.html?cr=00&pl=edit-00">Olga Besnard</a> / <a href="http://www.shutterstock.com/?cr=00&pl=edit-00">Shutterstock.com</a>)
(Olga Besnard / Shutterstock.com)

A new poll from Reuters/Ipsos found that a majority of Americans think that businesses should not be allowed to refuse to serve a customer based on religious beliefs. The survey also found that 52 percent of respondents believe that same-sex marriage should be legalized, versus 32 percent that oppose it.

The results come in the wake of "religious freedom" bills in Indiana and Arkansas that is a thinly veiled attempt to legalize institutional homophobia.

Reuters' Steve Holland reports:

Fifty-four percent said it was wrong for businesses to refuse services, while 28 percent said they should have that right. And 55 percent said businesses should not have the right to refuse to hire certain people or groups based on the employer's religious beliefs, while 27 percent said businesses should have the right...

For the survey, 892 people aged 18 years old and over were interviewed online. The Reuters/Ipsos online poll was measured using a credibility interval. It has a credibility interval of plus or minus 3.7 percentage points.

Another recent poll by the Center for American Progress found that support for laws preventing discrimination of LGBT people was even stronger among Americans aged 18 to 34, with 65 percent of respondents saying they would like to see such laws implemented.

"These numbers show that America's rising electorate stands firmly on the side of basic fairness for all people," said Laura E. Durso, director of CAP's LGBT research and communication project in an interview with Reuters. "In order to remedy the current reality of widespread legal discrimination against LGBT Americans, we will need millennials' leadership and passion to push Congress to enact comprehensive non-discrimination protections."

Joanna Rothkopf

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Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Arkansas Gay Rights Indiana Ipsos Lgbt Poll Religious Freedom Restoration Act Reuters Same-sex Marriage