When GOP lawmakers start to lose Fox News on an issue, they’re clearly running in the wrong direction. Over the weekend, Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace took up the anti-transgender portion of North Carolina’s HB2 law, noting that Ted Cruz thought he "saw an opening" to use these so-called "bathroom bills" to his advantage. But Wallace questioned whether it's "a good issue" for Republicans in the primary or the general election.
Guest commentator Ben Domenech never answered that question, preferring instead to skewer Donald Trump for failing to unite the party, while analyst Juan Williams remarked that LGBT issues don't have the same resonance for Republicans that they did in 2004. Wallace ultimately went even further than Williams, calling the basis for these transphobic measures bogus, reports Caitlin MacNeal:
"We actually decided to try to find out whether it is a public safety issue, whether it is a problem with transgender people misusing bathrooms to prey on others," [Wallace] said.
The Fox News host then noted that Politifact was unable to find any instances of people using laws meant to protect transgender people as cover for committing a crime.
"This seems to be a solution in search of a problem," Wallace said.
Ted Cruz is clearly going to push this issue, but it might not get much traction among Republicans who aren't religious fanatics, which appears to be Cruz’s sole audience.