USA Today reports that, “Millennials have reached a broad consensus on an issue that divides the nation: By nearly 2-1, they say transgender individuals should be able to use public bathrooms designated for the gender they identify with, not the sex they were born.
A new USA TODAY/Rock the Vote survey of those 18 to 35 years old shows a 62%-32% divide on the issue, and the intensity of opinion is on one side: 34% strongly agree they should be able to use the bathroom of the gender they identify with; just 17% strongly disagree.
Opinion among older Americans is much more closely split. In April, a Reuters/Ipsos poll found by a narrow 43%-41%, the public overall says transgender individuals should use the public bathroom of the gender they were born. Those over 60 felt that way by 2-1.
But on this as other social issues, the rising generation tends to hold liberal or libertarian views. In the USA TODAY poll, 53% describe themselves as liberal on social issues; just 26% say they are conservative. That’s in contrast to other concerns. On foreign policy, the divide is much closer, 37% liberal to 32% conservative. On economic issues, 42% say they are liberal, 34% conservative.
There are partisan differences on the issue. Supporters of Republican Donald Trump for president say by 55%-41% that transgenders should use the bathroom of the gender they were born. By a much wider margin, supporters of Democrat Hillary Clinton say they should use the bathroom of the gender they identify with, 76%-21%.