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June 23, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – A strong majority of voters disapprove of Barack Obama's mandate that public schools and universities open their restrooms and private facilities to the opposite sex, according to a new poll.

Voters in the swing states of Ohio, Florida, and Pennsylvania told Quinnipiac University pollsters they disapproved of the Obama administration's controversial federal guidance requiring public schools and universities to allow transgender students to use the restrooms, showers, and overnight accommodations of the opposite biological sex or lose federal funding.

Polls found respondents in those three states opposed the measure by an average of 14 percentage points.

In Ohio, 55 percent opposed the Obama administration policy, while 36 percent supported.

Florida voters opposed the measure 54-37.

And voters in Pennsylvania, which has been reliably Democratic in presidential elections for decades, opposed the school mandate 53-39.

“The Quinnipiac shows clearly that voters disagree with the Obama administration’s mandate that schools allow biological males to use girls’ showers, locker rooms, and restrooms in schools. This shows that Republican candidates for office would do well to highlight this issue in this year’s elections, while Democrats would do well to distance themselves from the administration’s radical position,” Peter Sprigg, senior fellow for policy studies at the Family Research Center, told LifeSiteNews.

Eleven states announced they were taking legal action to prevent the loss of federal education dollars, for everything from school lunches to special education, shortly after Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the guidance in May.  

A Hillary Clinton campaign spokeswoman told The Washington Post, “Hillary Clinton applauds the Obama administration for taking actions this week to stand up for the rights of LGBT people.” Donald Trump has said he opposes the ordinance and would not impose it if elected president.

Mr. Trump is particularly popular in Pennsylvania, where tens of thousands of Democrats have switched parties to vote for him.

Combined, the three states in the Quinnipiac poll represent 67 of the 270 electoral votes needed to win the presidency. No Republican has won Pennsylvania since George H.W. Bush's landslide victory over Michael Dukakis in 1988.

The poll also found that a majority of voters in Ohio did not believe that members of one biological sex should legally be allowed to use the facilities of the opposite sex. Voters in all three states were narrowly split.

“The fact that the numbers are much closer on the question of whether transgender people should generally be ,allowed' to use the facilities of their choice shows that Americans are somewhat reluctant to endorse government mandates in either direction,” Sprigg told LifeSiteNews. “I would point out, however, that it is transgender activists who have picked this fight by demanding that they be allowed unlimited access to the facilities of their choice, and that those who object be actively punished using civil rights law penalties and (in the case of schools) the denial of federal funds.”

“This was a completely unnecessary assault upon the status quo, under which such sensitive issues were addressed on a case-by-case basis,” Sprigg concluded.