Biological male, transgender women’s Olympic weightlifter Laurel Hubbard (Getty Images/Adrian Dennis)

A new Axios/Momentive poll finds that only one in five U.S. adults believe Olympic athletes should be allowed to choose to compete against athletes of a different biological sex.

Twice as many U.S. adults say Olympic athletes should compete against other athletes of the same biological sex as say they should be able to compete against athletes who share their chosen gender identity, the survey finds:

  • 39% of people say transgender athletes should compete against others of the gender they were assigned at birth,
  • 14% say trans athletes should not be allowed to compete at all,
  • 20% say they should compete against others of the gender with which they identify, and
  • 23% say they don’t know.

Thus, a majority (53%) say transgender athletes should either compete according to their biological sex or stay out of Olympic competition all together.

While views differ widely between Republicans and Democrats, the attitude of Independents mirrors that of the nation, overall. Here, 35% of Independents say transgender athletes should compete against those of their same biological sex, while 12% say they shouldn’t compete and 18% say it’s their choice, Yahoo! News reports.

Democrats are more likely to say transgender athletes should be able to choose, rather than stick with their biological sex (35%-25%), but Republicans are far more prone to say athletes should compete against others of their own biological sex (58%-8%).

A record 142 publicly-LGBTQ athletes will compete in this year’s Summer Olympics – more than competed in all previous Summer Games combined – with the U.S. having, by far, the most LGBTQ athletes, Axios reports:

“The U.S. leads the way with 34, followed by Canada (16), the U.K. (15) and the Netherlands (13).

“Women outnumber men eight to one, while women’s soccer has by far the most overall, with 38.”

Most notably, biological male Laurel Hubbard will compete as a member of New Zealand’s women’s weightlifting team, becoming the first openly transgender woman in the event; and Chelsea Wolfe, an alternate on the U.S. BMX freestyle team is the first transgender Olympic athlete on Team USA.

The Axios/Momentive survey, conducted July 14-18, 2021, polled 5,169 U.S. adults.

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