If any abortion opponents envisioned a groundswell of support for abortion restrictions in the wake of the Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision, they must be shocked at how quickly the tides have turned against them.
A new Wall Street Journal poll has bad news all around for abortion opponents, noting that, “Support for abortion in most or all cases rose among Catholics to 59%, up from 45% in March. Support from Black voters was at 69%, up from 59%. College-educated women moved to 76% in support, up from 65%.”
There’s more bad news:
The poll also showed clear opposition to the types of abortion restrictions being enacted or discussed in some states. A total of 62% opposed an abortion ban at 6 weeks of pregnancy that only included an exception for the health of the mother, and 57% opposed a ban at 15 weeks with an exception only for the health of the mother. The survey said 77% opposed banning women who live in states where abortion is illegal from traveling to other states to get an abortion. And 81% were against banning all abortions.
On prosecuting doctors who conduct abortions, 70% were in opposition. On restricting access to some contraception, like the morning after pill, 78% were opposed.
“Abortion is not an issue that most people, prior to Dobbs, spent a lot of time thinking about,” said Democratic pollster Molly Murphy, whose firm conducted the poll with Republican pollster Tony Fabrizio. “What Dobbs has done is one, we’ve had a national conversation about it. Two, it has gone from hypothetical to real.”
These are the reasons that Republicans are trying, probably unsuccessfully, to prevent a November ballot initiative in Michigan that would enshrine abortion rights in the state’s constitution. The GOP in Michigan saw what happened in red-as-red-can-be Kansas when voters there overwhelming approved a similar ballot initiative.