Support for Privacy Legislation Grows Across Texas

UT/Texas Tribune Poll Reveals Increase in Support


Wednesday, June 21, 2017

HOUSTON TX – A University of Texas/Texas Tribune poll was released yesterday under a headline indicating most Texans do not think privacy legislation — requiring separate, designated restrooms, locker rooms, and showers for men and women and boys and girls in public schools and government facilities – is important. According to news reports, 44 percent of those surveyed believe privacy is an important issue while 47 percent do not. What the news stories fail to explain is that the data released shows the number of Texans who believe privacy to be an important issue has increased 5 points since the last UT/TxTrib poll was released in February. 

Also buried in the news coverage was the fact that the poll showed that the percentage of people who believe privacy legislation is important has increased 13 percent among Republican voters and 31 percent among core Republicans. Those who do not believe privacy legislation is important and presumably oppose it has not changed.

This dramatic increase in the number of people who believe privacy legislation is important and the lack of change among those who don’t is particularly telling considering the onslaught of negative news coverage hurled at privacy legislation advocates during the 140-day regular legislative session. One anti-privacy group announced that there had been $200 million in “bad publicity for the state” as a result of the proposed bathroom legislation.

“Clearly all this bad publicity has only served to galvanize Texans in their support for the safety and privacy of women,” said Allen Blakemore, political strategist for Lt. Governor Dan Patrick, a leading advocate of privacy legislation in Texas.

“Our own polling has consistently found strong support for the legislature to establish a privacy policy in Texas and we suspect the UT Texas Tribune poll would find the same thing if they asked the question. Unfortunately, this poll did not ask a simple support/oppose question on the issue of privacy.

“Instead, they only asked those surveyed if they thought the privacy issue was important — no context was provided. After finding majority support in the previous UT/TxTrib poll on this issue, it is interesting that they did not ask the question in this poll.

“Finally, the odd methodology skews the UT/TxTrib survey. It is important to remember that the number of Texans who believe privacy is an important issue would probably be higher if the polling sample was drawn from voting Texans. This poll has more Democrats and more people between the ages of 18 and 44 than actually vote. The polling sample is also almost a third liberals, when virtually any responsible Texas pollster will tell you that the number of self-identified liberals who vote in Texas is only a little more than 20 percent,” Blakemore concluded.

More information about Texans for Dan Patrick is available at