Story at a glance
- 67 percent of LGBTQ+ and ally voters in Florida are “extremely” motivated to vote this year, according to a new poll from the LGBTQ+ media advocacy group GLAAD.
- More than half of LGBTQ+ voters and their allies are more motivated to vote this year than they were in the 2020 presidential election, according to GLAAD.
- Most LGBTQ+ and ally voters in Florida believe current elected officials are taking away their basic human rights.
LGBTQ+ voters in Florida say they are “extremely motivated” to vote in the state’s midterm elections this year as current elected officials limit access to reproductive and gender-affirming health care, according to a poll published Monday by the LGBTQ+ media advocacy group GLAAD.
More than two-thirds of LGBTQ+ voters and their allies are “extremely motivated” to vote this year, according to the poll, which collected responses from 600 registered voters in Florida from July 5-12. Fifty-eight percent of those voters said they are even more motivated to show up to the polls this year than they were in the 2020 presidential election.
“Florida’s LGBTQ voters and ally voters have grave concerns about their basic human rights, including access to abortion, freedom of speech, and evidence-based healthcare for LGBTQ youth,” Sarah Kate Ellis, the president and chief executive of GLAAD, said Monday. “They’re motivated to make a difference in this crucial election.”
Approximately 77 percent of LGBTQ+ and ally voters in Florida believe it is “more important than ever” to vote this year. They say the restoration of abortion rights, meaningful gun safety reform and lowering inflation are key objectives.
Voters also expressed interest in repealing a recently implemented law that limits how public school educators through high school may address topics including sexual orientation and gender identity with their students. The law, officially titled the Parental Rights in Education law, has been dubbed by its critics as the “Don’t Say Gay” law.
Cory Berneart, an elementary school teacher on the west coast of Florida, told GLAAD that the law is “a solution to a problem that does not exist.”
According to Sunshine State Standards, which establish the core curricula for Florida K-12 public school students, teachers are neither required nor expected to educate their students on sexual orientation or gender identity.
More than 70 percent of LGBTQ+ and ally voters in Florida believe the intent of the Florida law is to attack LGBTQ+ people and strongly agree that similar bills will be “emotionally damaging” to youth and their families, according to the GLAAD poll.
Roughly 77 percent of LGBTQ+ and ally voters surveyed also said they have a “somewhat” to “very” unfavorable opinion of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R), whose administration this year has introduced multiple measures to restrict access to reproductive and gender-affirming health care.
DeSantis in April signed into law a bill banning abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy, with no exceptions for rape or incest. The enforcement of that law has since been blocked by a judge who said the law violated the state constitution.
In June, Florida’s Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA), which controls most of its Medicaid program, published a notice for a proposed rule to eliminate coverage for puberty blockers, hormones and surgeries when they are used to treat gender dysphoria.
The state Health Department has also said that gender-affirming health care, including social transition, should not be made available to anyone younger than 18.
According to the Williams Institute, a public policy think tank focused on issues related to sexual orientation and gender identity, roughly 4.6 percent of Floridians are LGBTQ+ and 24 percent of LGBTQ+ people in Florida are raising children.
The state ranks third in the nation for the most same-sex couples, behind New York and California.