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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, December 9, 2016 - Volume 44 Issue 50
NC Gov. McCrory lost because of anti-LGBT bill, new poll shows
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NC Gov. McCrory lost because of anti-LGBT bill, new poll shows

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

As North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory conceded defeat to his Democratic challenger, Roy Cooper, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) released a new poll showing conclusively that McCrory was defeated by HB 2, the draconian anti-LGBT bill he pushed through the state legislature.

The survey, conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner for HRC and Equality North Carolina, interviewed 500 North Carolina voters and 1,100 voters nationwide.

'Civil right issues were a major part of the election in North Carolina, and these issues cost Republican Pat McCrory his job,' the survey concludes.

While fellow Republican Donald Trump won North Carolina by some 100,000 votes, McCrory lost the state by more than 10,000.

Not only did McCrory run behind Donald Trump, he also ran 96,000 votes behind Sen. Richard Burr, running for re-election.

According to the polling, 'McCrory lost on Election Day because, unlike Trump and Burr, he did not dominate independent voters.' Both Trump and Burr won independent voters by 21 points, while McCrory won the group by only 9 points.

The polling also found that HB 2 was the leading reason voters gave for voting against McCrory, with 57% of the respondents citing it - 17 points more than any other single issue. According to the poll, North Carolina voters opposed to HB 2 by a margin of 62% to 30%, and McCrory couldn't survive his association with the unpopular measure.

'This research is proof that when it comes to LGBTQ equality, hearts and minds remain forever changed and on our side. Nowhere is that more clear than in North Carolina, where voters soundly rejected Pat McCrory and sent a clear signal that anti-LGBTQ politicking is now a liability to candidates, no matter their party,' said HRC President Chad Griffin.

'Barely 10 years ago, Republicans - and some Democrats - running for governor were campaigning their support for state bans on marriage equality. But today, as McCrory has proven to the nation, promoting anti-LGBTQ discrimination will cost you an election. There is no doubt that Americans have moved inexorably in the direction of equality and have no appetite for hatred from their elected officials.'

'This polling data shows what we have seen and heard in our communities all over the state: HB2 is bad for North Carolina,' said Equality NC Executive Director Chris Sgro.

'Pat McCrory refused to listen to the people of North Carolina and as a result, the people stood up and ousted him out of office. That means that a champion of equality will replace one of the worst anti-LGBTQ politicians as the highest officeholder in our state. North Carolinians deserve a governor that represents their values. There is much to be done in order to support Roy Cooper's efforts to repeal HB 2 and create statewide nondiscrimination protections. We are looking forward to working with Governor-Elect Roy Cooper to repeal the vile HB 2 and restore North Carolina's reputation.'

The nationwide polling found a massive increase in support for marriage equality compared to the 2012 election.

A 61% majority of voters now support marriage equality, compared to only 50% after the 2012 election. There is also significant support for comprehensive legal protections for LGBTQ Americans. An impressive 69% of voters support passing the Equality Act, which would add LGBT rights to federal civil rights laws.

Even a 55% majority of Trump voters support the measure.

'Whatever message voters sent Tuesday, November 8, they did not signal any kind of retreat from LGBTQ equality,' pollsters concluded.

'LGBTQ issues were not a major part of the national debate this cycle and only 44% heard anything about Donald Trump and Mike Pence's position on 'gay rights and LGBT issues.' Nonetheless, impressive majorities of the electorate that sent Donald Trump to the White House support marriage equality and the Equality Act, and more fundamentally, 63% of voters believe the right to marry for same-sex couples is now a permanent right in this country.'

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