Most Texans don’t want to make medical abortion a crime, poll finds
AUSTIN — About six in 10 Texans oppose the idea of continuing a crackdown on abortion with additional laws that would criminalize the use of an “abortion pill” obtained out of state and qualify the Texan’s decision to have a homicide abortion, new poll finds. .
From 56% to 31%, registered voters in the state believe that most Texas women who want an abortion will still be able to get one by traveling out of state, according to a poll released Tuesday by the Hobby School of Public Affairs in the University of Houston. .
A small majority of Texans support state organizations raising money to fund trips for pregnant women out of state to get an abortion. 51% would allow it, while 37% favor that such financial contributions are illegal.
A wide range of Texans support various policies likely to be considered by the Legislature next year that would help pregnant women, babies and young children, according to the poll.
Slicing the state’s electorate into eight different views on abortion, the UH poll suggested more than seven in 10 Texans (72%) want more restrictions than allowed by the Roe v. Wade decision. of the United States Supreme Court in 1973.
A similar, albeit larger share (77%), however, is more permissive than the “trigger” law the legislature passed last year, he found.
Due to take effect by the end of the summer, Bill 1280 would ban abortions unless a doctor determines that continuing the pregnancy endangers the woman’s life or “presents a serious risk. substantial impairment of a major bodily function”.
In a surprising finding, almost as many Texans say they support the trigger law (46%) as oppose it (50%), according to the UH poll.
The online poll interviewed 1,169 YouGov respondents registered to vote between June 27 and July 7. The margin of error was plus or minus 2.9 percentage points.
A June poll by the University of Texas at Austin found support for an automatic ban on all abortions in Texas, if Roe v. Wade were overturned, at just 37%.
However, this investigation by the University of Texas/Texas Policy Project was conducted before the Supreme Court acted, if after Justice Samuel Alito’s majority opinion was disclosed. The UT poll did not refer specifically to the Texas trigger law, noted Rice University political scientist Mark Jones, poll director for the UH Hobby School.
“There’s no mention of ‘unless the mother’s life is in danger’ in the question,” he said of the UT survey questionnaire. “That would tilt the response against Texas law since our data shows this is a significant exception for many pro-life Texans.”
UH and UT surveys are conducted via the Internet, not with a “live operator” over the phone.
While telephone and face-to-face opinion polls are more expensive — and made even more difficult, as the proportion of Americans who won’t be polled has increased — some political professionals are wary of online polls. All interviewees agreed to participate, they note. Such haste could skew the results.
Both UH and UT polls choose from panels of participants recruited by YouGov, a UK-based market research and data analysis company.
“The proof of the accuracy of YouGov investigations, at least those I have been involved in, is in the pudding,” Jones said.
In the 2020 presidential election, the UH poll came close to 21 public polls in predicting President Donald Trump’s victory by 5.6 percentage points in Texas, he noted. And in March, a poll Jones oversees for the Dallas-based Texas Hispanic Policy Foundation more foreshadowed the significance of Attorney General Ken Paxton’s landslide victory over Lands Commissioner George P. Bush in the US Attorney General’s primary. GOP (36 points) than some public polls, he said.
On abortion, the UH poll found:
- 60% of Texans oppose legislation to make it a crime to use abortion medical ingredients – mifepristone and misoprostol – obtained out of state to terminate a pregnancy during the recommended time frame (10 weeks).
- 59% oppose a law that would allow prosecutors to bring homicide charges against a woman who terminates her pregnancy.
- On average, white Texans have more restrictive preferences when it comes to abortion policies, with half (52%) preferring policies under which abortion is outright prohibited or only allowed if the woman’s life is in danger. danger or if the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest. That’s more than Latinos (44%) or, especially, black Texans (36%).
- On average, Latino and especially Black Texans prefer more permissive abortion policies than White Texans, with 37% of Latino Texans and 43% of Black Texans preferring policies under which abortion is permitted for any reason whether it’s up to 20 or 24 weeks (or anytime if the woman’s life is in danger), compared to just 28 percent of white Texans.
- By allowing fundraising to support out-of-state travel for Texas women to have abortions, members of the Millennial/Gen Z age cohort are significantly more likely than members of the cohort Boomers/Silent Generation (59% vs. 45%) Support.
- At least 84% of Republicans join more than 90% of Democrats in supporting five of eight tested policies on pregnancy and child-rearing that could go before state lawmakers next year — extending and improve foster care, offer newborn care classes, increase adoption services, provide pregnancy counseling and offer prenatal care.
- On three other mother-child proposals, there is overall support ranging from 74% to 80% but more of a partisan divide: expanding Medicaid coverage for pregnant women (supported by 90% of Democrats but only 62% of Republicans); providing free diapers, formula and baby food to low-income families (89% vs. 62%); and increasing the social safety net for pregnant women and young children (91% vs. 73%).
On some of the abortion questions, men were more supportive of restrictions than women. And supporters of GOP Gov. Greg Abbott were overwhelmingly more supportive of the restrictions than respondents who intend to vote for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Beto O’Rourke, according to the poll.