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ABC News released a poll this week suggesting the Florida education bill that has garnered national attention is unpopular among Americans, but subsequent polls have told a different story and the results appear to be based on what is included, or what is omitted, from the survey.
On Sunday, ABC News reported a poll it conducted with Ipsos finding that “More than 6 in 10 Americans oppose legislation that would prohibit classroom lessons about sexual orientation or gender identity in elementary school.”
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The poll was inspired by uproar generated against a GOP-backed bill that’s been derided by progressives as being anti-LGBTQ with accusations that the bill forbids any discussion pertaining to being gay in schools. Left-wing critics, including many in the media, have referred to the legislation as the “Don’t Say Gay” bill even though such language is absent from the bill itself.
Among other things, the bill, officially named Parental Rights in Education, states, “Classroom instruction by school personnel or third parties on sexual orientation or gender identity may not occur in kindergarten through grade 3 or in a manner that is not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards.”
Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is expected to sign the bill into law.
However, the poll obscures the key detail that the highly-debated portion of the Florida bill applies to only the youngest of school-age children, asking Americans, “would you support or oppose legislation that would prohibit classroom lessons about sexual orientation or gender identity in elementary school?” It found “62% of Americans oppose such legislation, while 37% support it.” Among political affiliation, only 20% of Democrats and 35% of independents backed the bill while earning 61% support among GOP voters.
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Additionally, ABC News/Ipsos acknowledged it “oversampled people who identify as LGBTQ” when finding that 87% of them also opposed the bill but added the poll “weighted” their responses “to match their correct proportion in the general population.”
Since Sunday, two new polls tackling the same bill made drastically different conclusions.
A poll released by Politico/Morning Consult Wednesday found that a “slim majority” of Americans back the bill.
“As you may know, the Florida legislature has passed a bill – labeled by opponents as the ’Don’t Say Gay’ bill – limiting the teaching of sexual orientation and gender identity to Florida school students. Some say that limiting these discussions will protect children from inappropriate classroom topics, while others say it will block important conversations about LGBTQ issues,” Politico/Morning Consult said in the survey. “To what extent do you support or oppose the following items in the bill? Banning the teaching of sexual orientation and gender identity from kindergarten through third grade.”
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Participants showed 51% of Americans either strongly or somewhat supported the bill while just 37% opposed. Among party affiliation, 70% of Republicans backed the bill while 46% of independents and 35% of Democrats felt the same way, a double-digit surge among non-conservatives from the ABC News poll.
Politico/Morning Consult then followed that question with “To what extent do you support or oppose the following items in the bill? Limiting lessons on sexual orientation and gender identity after third grade to ’age appropriate’ discussions,” which similarly received 52% support.
Additionally, a poll published by The Daily Wire/Lucid found that a whopping 64% supported the bill, nearly the exact opposite result of ABC News’ poll.
“Below is a passage from a new state education law. Please indicate whether you support or oppose it. ‘Classroom instruction by school personnel or third parties on sexual orientation or gender identity may not occur in kindergarten through third grade or in a manner that is not age appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards,” the survey read.
Unlike the ABC News poll, The Daily Wire’s poll saw broad support across the political spectrum with 69% of Republicans, 57% of independents, and a stunning 62% of Democrats.
The poll released Monday went more in-depth, asking voters, “Do you believe it is appropriate or inappropriate for teachers and school personnel to instruct children in kindergarten through 3rd grade on various sexual orientations?”
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“A clear majority of Americans (65%), including 69% of parents, say it is ‘inappropriate’ for teachers to instruct students in grades K-3 on sexual orientations while 21% say it is ‘appropriate,’” the Daily Wire reported.
When asked “Do you believe it is appropriate or inappropriate for teachers and school personnel to instruct children in kindergarten through 3rd grade on gender identities, such as transgenderism,” the poll showed 66% of Americans, including 69% of parents, said it is “inappropriate” while 20% say it is “appropriate.”
Fox News reached out to ABC News to compare the discrepancies between its results versus the Politico/Morning Consult and The Daily Wire surveys. Fox News asked why its poll omitted the kindergarten-third grade detail from the question to voters. ABC News did not respond.