Seven in 10 Americans back deciding state abortion rights by ballot measure: poll

Protesters for and against abortion rights argue outside the Supreme Court on Monday, June 27, 2022.
Greg Nash
Protesters for and against abortion rights argue outside the Supreme Court on Monday, June 27, 2022.

Seven in 10 Americans say they would support deciding state-level abortion rights by ballot measure, according to a new poll released Wednesday.

An Ipsos-USA Today poll found that 70 percent of Americans strongly or somewhat support their state using a ballot measure to decide abortion rights at the state level, compared to 28 percent who said they somewhat or strongly oppose it.

Broken down by party, 73 percent of Democrats polled and 77 percent of Republicans support the use of a ballot measure in their state to decide state-level abortion rights. Sixty-seven percent of independents polled also back the idea.

A majority of Americans — 54 percent — also said that if there was a ballot measure in their state to decide abortion rights, they would vote in favor of making the medical procedure legal. That percentage includes 76 percent of Democrats, 34 percent of Republicans and 52 percent of independents.

Meanwhile, 28 percent of Americans said they would be against making abortion legal or said they would not be in favor of abortion legality. That included 10 percent of Democrats, 54 percent of Republicans and 27 percent of independents. 

The poll also found that 60 percent of Americans — including 82 percent of Democrats and 32 percent of Republicans — believe abortion should either be legal in all or most cases. 

The poll comes a week after Kansas became the first state to weigh in on the Supreme Court’s decision in June to overturn Roe v. Wade, eliminating the constitutional right to an abortion.

Residents in the Sunflower State rejected a ballot measure that would have given the state legislature more authority to regulate access to the medical procedure. Several other states will also have ballot measures later this year asking voters to also weigh in on abortion rights at the state level.

The Ipsos-USA Today poll was conducted between Aug. 5 and Aug. 8 with 1,018 adults surveyed. The margin of error for the overall samples was plus or minus 3.5 percentage points at a 95 percent confidence level. When looking at the Democratic adult sample, the margin of error was plus or minus 6. 2 percentage points; for Republicans, it was plus or minus 6.9 percentage points; and it was plus or minus 6.3 percentage points for the sample of independents. 

Tags abortion access Ballot measure Ipsos Roe v. Wade United States USA Today
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