LGBTQ acceptance has steadily been climbing throughout many different groups of people – Muslims, Mormons, the elderly, independents, and others have all increased their support for LGBTQ people and equality. However, young Republicans in the United States has actually decreased their acceptance of LGBTQ people and rights from 2015-2018, according to the New York Times.
The drop is fairly significant, with Republicans under the age of thirty supporting protections from discrimination of LGBTQ people by eleven percent, which is the most significant drop that Robert P. Jones, chief executive of Public Religion Research Institute, the group that created the 40,000 participant survey, has seen.
The study asked 40,000 young Republicans about non-discrimination laws and businesses refusing service to LGBTQ people from March 14th to December 16th with interviewers calling 1,000 people every week asking to speak to the youngest adult in the household.
PRRI released the findings of the study, which notes that in 2015, 74% of Republicans ages 18-29 supported LGBTQ non-discrimination laws, while in 2018, the percentage dropped to 63%. I have recently written about how I was skeptical of the claim that the majority of Americans support LGBTQ protections, and yes while 63% is still the majority, support dropping by such a large percent indicates that not as many Americans support LGBTQ protections as the linked post suggests.
However, while young Republican support has dropped, 90% of Unitarian Universalists, 80% of Jewish people, 79% of Hindus, 70% of Mormons, and 60% of Muslims said that they support same-sex marriage. Dr. Jones commented that such widespread support is “remarkable” as the political climate in the United States has been increasingly polarizing and there are many issues that many different groups of people disagree on (was that redundant?).
Judging by the amount of increased negative attitudes towards LGBTQ people that has occurred in these past few years, I can’t say that I’m particularly surprised to hear that LGBTQ support among young Republicans dropped, but I still don’t like the fact that it has. However, looking at the other statistics, I am filled with cautious optimism that Americans are moving in the right direction.