Majority of Voters Support Florida’s New Parental Rights in Education Bill
The Parental Rights in Education bill, known to its critics as the "Don't Say Gay" bill, is now law. And despite what the new law’s Far Left critics say, it does not say, “Don’t say gay.”
As Florida’s principled limited government constitutional conservative governor Ron DeSantis explained, it's about "no sexual instruction" being given to young students. "When you actually look at the bill and it says 'no sexual instruction to kids pre-K through three,' how many parents want their kids to have transgenderism or something injected into classroom instruction?" DeSantis said. "It's basically saying for our younger students, do you really want them being taught about sex? And this is any sexual stuff. But I think clearly right now, we see a focus on transgenderism, telling kids they may be able to pick genders and all of that."
“We’ve seen instances of students being told by different folks in school, ‘Oh, don’t worry, don’t pick your gender yet,’” DeSantis said at a news conference in Miami reported by the Tampa Bay Times. “They won’t tell the parents about these discussions that are happening. That is entirely inappropriate. Schools need to be teaching kids to read, to write.”
The bill allows parents to sue school districts if they are not privy to situations related to their children or if their students are encouraged to have discussions on sexual orientation and gender identity.
Critics have slammed a new Florida state law restricting gender and sexual orientation instruction for young public school students, but a majority of voters nationwide support the law.
The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 62% of Likely U.S. Voters would support a law like Florida’s Parental Rights in Education bill in their own state, including 45% who Strongly Support the measure. Twenty-nine percent (29%) would oppose a similar law in their own state, including 19% who Strongly Oppose it. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
The relevant passage of the law reads: “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.”
Seventy-four percent (74%) of Republicans, 49% of Democrats and 66% of voters not affiliated with either major party would support a law like Florida’s in their own state.
Critics have called for boycotting Florida over the new law, but most voters reject that idea. Fifty-one percent (51%) oppose boycotting Florida over the new school law, including 41% who Strongly Oppose a boycott. Thirty-nine percent (39%) support boycotting Florida, including 22% who Strongly Support a boycott. Another 10% are not sure.
The survey of 1,000 U.S. Likely Voters was conducted on March 15-16, 2022 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
A majority (57%) of Democratic voters support boycotting Florida over the new law, but 62% of Republicans and 60% of unaffiliated voters are opposed to such a boycott.
Seventy-five percent (75%) of voters say they have closely followed recent news stories about Florida’s law restricting gender and sexual orientation instruction in public schools, including 37% who have Very Closely followed news about the Florida law. Twenty-three percent (23%) haven’t closely followed news about Florida’s new school law.
Among voters who have Very Closely followed news about the Florida law, 69% would support a similar law in their own state, while 28% would oppose such a law.
Majorities of every racial category – 63% of whites, 61% of Black voters and 64% of other minorities – would support a law similar to Florida’s Parental Rights in Education bill in their own state.
A majority (54%) of voters under 40 support the idea of boycotting Florida over the new law restricting gender and sexual orientation instruction in public schools, but 60% of voters ages 40-64 and 54% of those 65 and older oppose a boycott of Florida.
Government employees are significantly more likely than private-sector workers to support the idea of boycotting Florida over the new law.
It will surprise no one that President Joe Biden’s strongest supporters are most opposed to the Parental Rights in Education bill and most likely to support a boycott of Florida over the new law. Among voters who Strongly Approve of Biden’s job performance as president, 53% would oppose a law like Florida’s in their own state and 73% support the idea of boycotting Florida. By contrast, among voters who Strongly Disapprove of Biden’s performance, 80% would support a law similar to Florida’s in their own state and 76% oppose boycotting Florida over the new law.
Most Americans believe parents are right to be concerned about controversial teaching in public schools, and reject the claim that these are “phony” issues.
Many parents are concerned about the books provided to children in schools and libraries, especially those promoting “woke” progressive beliefs about sexuality and racial issues.
Additional information from this survey and a full demographic breakdown are available through this link.
Parental Rights in Education bill
Don't Say Gay bill
'no sexual instruction
Joe Biden administration