Poll Shows Voter Opposition To Religious Freedom Bill
North Carolina voters don’t support legislation that would allow business owners to deny service to gays and lesbians because of the owner’s religious beliefs, according to a poll by Elon University.
Nearly two-thirds of voters surveyed say gays and lesbians should not be refused service, regardless of the owner’s faith. Opposition was strongest among Democrats and young voters. But just over half of Republicans say businesses should have that right.
Such religious freedom initiatives have been met with backlash in other states. A similar bill has been filed in the North Carolina General Assembly, called the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
The bill has drawn opposition from businesses, including IBM, and Gov. Pat McCrory has also expressed concerns.
House leaders said last week they would not take up the legislation.
Supporters of religious freedom bills say they allow people to live by their spiritual values. But critics say they allow discrimination against same-sex couples.