More Americans say abortion, women’s rights should be a priority for government: poll

·2 min read

Story at a glance

  • The Supreme Court overturn of Roe v. Wade means states now have the right to expand or curtail access to abortion services.

  • For some voters, this shift made the procedure and women’s rights a high priority for the government.

  • Democrats hope to use this support to bolster turnout at the 2022 midterm elections.

A poll conducted before and after the time the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade – the 1973 landmark decision that established the constitutional right to an abortion –  show 22 percent of Americans feel abortion or women’s rights are among their top five priorities for lawmakers.

That’s about triple the proportion of those who reported the same in a December 2021 poll, and is the highest number reported since 2015.

Respondents who wanted the government to prioritize abortion were about equally likely to either support abortion rights or want the procedure banned. In the past, those who wanted to restrict access to abortion more often cited abortion as a priority.

Findings are based on The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research survey of over 1,000 Americans conducted between June 23 and 27. The majority of interviews took place after the announcement was made, while the previous interviews were before the decision but after a draft of the plan to overturn the case was leaked to the press.

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Compared with a similar poll conducted last year, more women and Democrats said they believe abortion should be legal in all cases. Prioritizing abortion rose sharply among men surveyed, but only in the time after the decision was made.

However, more than 70 percent of participants did not cite the issues as a priority for the government. Currently, 9 percent of voters feel abortion should be illegal in all cases, and around 30 percent feel it should be legal in most but not all cases.

Pollsters found the majority of those for whom women’s rights are top of mind feel the procedure should be legal in most or all cases. ​​

As campaigning for the November 2022 midterm elections ramps up, results suggest abortion and women’s issues will be a hot topic for candidates on the trail, despite pessimism expressed by some, and worries the Supreme Court’s ruling to overturn Roe v. Wade means other liberties are at stake too.

It’s now up to states to determine the extent of abortion access for residents, and many have vowed to severely curtail the health care procedure.

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