• Polling

Support for Abortion Rights Has Grown in the Year Since Roe Was Overturned

Friday, June 23, 2023 By Rachael Russell
Activists protest in front of the Supreme Court after the Dobbs decision to overturn Roe v Wade and curtail abortion rights.
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Abortion: A Guide for Advocates

This Navigator Research report contains data from a new survey conducted June 14 – 20 on the latest perceptions of abortion rights in the year since Roe v. Wade was overturned, including whether the decision has been good or bad for the country, what actions Americans support Congress taking to protect abortion, as well as how Americans perceive potential bans on sending abortion medication by mail.

In the year since Roe was overturned, there remains consistent and growing support for abortion rights in the United States.

Three in five Americans identify as pro-choice (60 percent), while a third identify as pro-life (33 percent), compared to
April of last year prior to the leaked Dobbs decision, when 58 percent identified as pro-choice and 36 percent identified as pro-life. There has been an increase in the share of independents who identify as pro-choice by a net 15 points (from net +26 in April 2022 to net +41 now); nearly seven in ten Americans under the age of 45 identify as pro-choice (68 percent). 

  • Americans overwhelmingly say that either abortion is morally acceptable and should be legal or that the government should not be involved in the decision to have an abortion (72 percent), including overwhelming majorities of Hispanic Americans (81 percent), Asian American and Pacific Islanders (79 percent each), Black Americans (77 percent), and white Americans (70 percent). 
  • Nearly three in five Americans say that the Supreme Court eliminating the federal right to an abortion has been bad for the country (58 percent), including four in five Democrats (81 percent), a majority of independents (55 percent), and a third of Republicans (32 percent). 
Bar graph of polling data from Navigator Research. Title: Majorities Remain Pro-Choice and Say Abortion Should Be Legal
Bar graph of polling data from Navigator Research. Title: Three in Five Say Abortion Should Be Legal in All or Most Cases
Bar graph of polling data from Navigator Research. Title: Twice As Many Americans Say SCOTUS Overturning Roe v. Wade Has Been Bad for the Country Than Good

Americans oppose the banning of sending prescription abortion medication by mail.

As anti-abortion activists look to the enforcement of the Comstock Act to further restrict abortion access, Americans oppose the banning of sending prescription abortion medication by mail. By an 18-point margin, Americans oppose a ban on sending prescription abortion medication by mail (34 percent support – 52 percent oppose). Opposition increases to a 31-point margin with additional context regarding the Comstock Act as “an 1873 law that prevents the mailing of ‘obscene’ materials… today, some anti-abortion advocates want the government to use the same law to ban the mailing of prescription abortion medication to patients to end an early pregnancy at home” (27 percent support – 58 percent oppose), including among three in four Democrats (net -56; 17 percent support – 73 percent oppose), a majority of independents (net -36; 20 percent support – 56 percent oppose), and a narrow plurality of Republicans (net -2; 40 percent support – 42 percent oppose).

Bar graph of polling data from Navigator Research. Title: Framing the Comstock Act as Archaic With an Explanation of Abortion Pill Circumstances Increases Opposition to a Ban

Opposition to a nationwide abortion ban has grown while support for a federal law to protect abortion rights remains strong

Two in three Americans oppose a nationwide ban on abortion (net -41; 26 percent support – 67 percent oppose). While a similar share opposed a nationwide ban prior to the
Dobbs decision last June (net -35; 29 percent support – 64 percent oppose), there has been increases in the shares of Democrats (from net -59 to net -71) and independents (from net -46 to net -54) who oppose a nationwide ban. 

  • Three in five Americans support Congress passing a law guaranteeing the right to an abortion (net +27; 59 percent support – 32 percent oppose), including nearly four in five Democrats (net +63; 78 percent support – 15 percent oppose), a majority of independents (net +28; 54 percent support – 26 percent oppose), and two in five Republicans (net -11; 40 percent support – 51 percent oppose). 
Bar graph of polling data from Navigator Research. Title: A Nationwide Abortion Ban Is Deeply Unpopular; Congress Protecting the Right to an Abortion Is Broadly Supported

A plurality of Americans say a nationwide abortion ban makes them more motivated to vote.

When asked whether a Republican candidate’s support for a nationwide abortion ban makes Americans more or less motivated to vote, 43 percent say it would make them more motivated, compared with 24 percent who say less motivated while 32 percent say it makes no difference. Half of Democrats say they are more motivated to vote by a nationwide abortion ban, including 39 percent who say they are “much more” motivated to vote, compared to 41 percent of Republicans who say they are more motivated to vote, including just 26 percent being “much more” motivated to vote. There is a significant motivation advantage by abortion position: 27 percent of Americans overall are both pro-choice and more motivated to vote, compared to just 15 percent of Americans overall who are pro-life and more motivated to vote.

  • Americans are most likely to describe Republicans who support a nationwide abortion ban as extreme (42 percent), out of touch (39 percent), and dangerous (39 percent). Independents and Democrats are most likely to describe these Republicans as out of touch (46 percent and 52 percent, respectively) and dangerous (40 percent and 57 percent, respectively). Republicans are most likely to call them conservative (45 percent), traditional (33 percent), and faithful (30 percent), though one in four call them extreme (28 percent) and out of touch (24 percent).
Bar graph of polling data from Navigator Research. Title: More Americans Are Motivated to Vote Against Than For GOP Candidates Who Support Abortion Bans
Bar graph of polling data from Navigator Research. Title: Americans Describe Republicans Who Support a Nationwide Abortion Ban As “Extreme,” “Out of Touch,” “Dangerous”

Most Americans Support Legislation Protecting LGBTQ+ Americans from Discrimination

Polling data on LGBTQ+ issues in the United States, including support for adding sexual orientation and gender identity to anti-discrimination laws.

Most Americans Think the United States Is Not Doing Enough to Support Families

Polling data on the U.S. government’s support for families, including polling on government programs that aim to help families with children.

Most Impactful Congressional Accomplishments: Lowering Health Care Costs & Domestic Manufacturing

Poll data on how constituents perceive a variety of different policies passed by Congress in recent years and how they evaluate forward-looking goals and priorities of Democratic lawmakers in Congress.

About The Study

Global Strategy Group conducted public opinion surveys among a sample of 1,000 registered voters from June 14-June 20, 2023. 101 additional interviews were conducted among Hispanic voters. 75 additional interviews were conducted among Asian American and Pacific Islander voters. 100 additional interviews were conducted among African American voters. 100 additional interviews were conducted among independent voters. The survey was conducted online, recruiting respondents from an opt-in online panel vendor. Respondents were verified against a voter file and special care was taken to ensure the demographic composition of our sample matched that of the national registered voter population across a variety of demographic variables.

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About Navigator

In a world where the news cycle is the length of a tweet, our leaders often lack the real-time public-sentiment analysis to shape the best approaches to talking about the issues that matter the most. Navigator is designed to act as a consistent, flexible, responsive tool to inform policy debates by conducting research and reliable guidance to inform allies, elected leaders, and the press. Navigator is a project led by pollsters from Global Strategy Group and GBAO along with an advisory committee, including: Andrea Purse, progressive strategist; Arkadi Gerney, The Hub Project; Joel Payne, The Hub Project; Christina Reynolds, EMILY’s List; Delvone Michael, Working Families; Felicia Wong, Roosevelt Institute; Mike Podhorzer, AFL-CIO; Jesse Ferguson, progressive strategist; Navin Nayak, Center for American Progress Action Fund; Stephanie Valencia, EquisLabs; and Melanie Newman, Planned Parenthood Action Fund.

For press inquiries contact: press@navigatorresearch.org