New WSJ poll shows more support for abortion after the Supreme Court overturned of Roe v. Wade

·2 min read

Voters have grown even more supportive of abortion rights since the Supreme Court struck down Roe v Wade this summer, according to a new Wall Street Journal poll.

This August, among 1,313 polled registered voters of both parties, 60 per cent said abortion should be legal in most or all cases, up from 55 per cent on the same question in March. (A majority of people have supported abortion access since at least 1995, according to Pew).

The proportion of those who opposed abortion with limited caveats remained about the same, with 29 per cent saying it should be banned exceptions for rape, incest, and the life of the pregnant person, compared to 30 per cent in March.

The energy wasn’t split equally between the parties, however. More than three-quarters of Democrats said the Supreme Court decision in Dobbs v Jackson Women’s Health Organization made them more likely to vote, while just over a quarter of Republicans felt the same way.

“Abortion is not an issue that most people, prior to Dobbs, spent a lot of time thinking about,” Democratic pollster Molly Murphy told the paper. “What Dobbs has done is one, we’ve had a national conversation about it. Two, it has gone from hypothetical to real.”

The end of constitutional protections to abortion rights sent instant political shockwaves through the country.

About a dozen conservative states have moved to ban or severely restrict abortion after the ruling so far, as The Independent has reported.

There have been some surprises though.

This August, in the first state referendum on abortion rights since the end of Roe, voters in Kansas turned out in huge numbers and shot down a constitutional amendment that would remove abortion protections.

“Kansas values have always exemplified freedom, and tonight, Kansas continued that legacy,” Emily Wales, president of Planned Parenthood Great Plains Votes, said at the time.

Democrats, who political forecasters like FiveThirtyEight predict are more likely to lose control of the House in 2022, are hoping the fight for abortion access can re-invigorate their election hopes, along with the Biden administration’s recent wins around student debt cancellation and climate legislation.