In an unexpected outcome of a poll released Monday by the Public Religion Research Institute showed that more than three-quarters of Utahns are in favor of laws that protect LGBTQ residents from discrimination. According to the poll, Utah tied with the very liberal state of Vermont, garnering an impressive “2nd highest ranking nationwide”, behind New Hampshire.
And the poll shows it’s the only Republican state in the top five.
The survey showed 77 percent of Utahns favor and 19 percent oppose protecting LGBTQ residents from discrimination, an eight percentage points higher than the national average.
In another turn of events, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints put out a statement which reads: “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has long advocated for a balanced approach to protecting religious freedoms while extending protections to LGBT people. This fairness for all approach was implemented in Utah in 2015, and along with many other religious and LGBT groups, we believe Utah’s approach would be a good model at the federal level.”
“I’m just super proud that we continue to defy expectations and stereotypes,” Troy Williams, executive director of Equality Utah, told The Salt Lake Tribune. “I’m gushing. This is not happening in other conservative states.”
Williams also inferred, “This poll reveals that Utah can model for the rest of the nation how to work together.”