Poll: Texas Republican Voters Say Proposed ‘bathroom Bill' Is an Important Issue

AUSTIN — Much of the recent legislative session was spent debating a “bathroom bill” — a discussion that’s going to continue during a special session — but according to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune poll, such legislation is important to only 44 percent of respondents.When asked how important it is that legislators address “restricting access to public restrooms for transgender people,” 26 percent of that 44 percent thought it was “very important.”Lawmakers failed to agree on a bathroom bill, which was a priority of Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, during the regular session. Earlier this month, Gov. Greg Abbott added the topic to a laundry list of items that can be taken up during a special session that starts July 18.June’s poll, which was conducted online between June 2 and June 11, surveyed 1,200 self-declared registered voters. It has margin of error of plus or minus 2.83 percentage points and was conducted by YouGov.Respondents were asked a similar question in the February version of the poll, and 39 percent thought it was an important issue while 51 percent did not.Jim Henson, co-director of the poll and director of the Texas Politics Project, said that the Democratic numbers on the bathroom bill issue “stayed pretty stable” from February to June, but that there was a lot of movement among Republicans, especially for those who identify with the tea party.He said Republican support overall increased by 13 percentage points, to 57 percent, and support among tea party members jumped from 39 percent to 70 percent during the four-month window.“We rarely see those kinds of movements,” Henson said. “That is a big movement in four months among this subgroup.”Henson said the increase could be attributed to Patrick’s zeal for passing the bathroom legislation and news coverage of the issue.  Continue reading...

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