BOSTON — The majority of Massachusetts voters support Planned Parenthood and access to reproductive health care, including safe, legal abortion, according to poll results released Tuesday. The findings show that voters strongly support protecting health care access even as Congressional Republicans continue efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and cut funding for family planning services, and push a political agenda to shut down Planned Parenthood and restrict access to safe, legal abortion.
Overall, 74 percent of Massachusetts voters view Planned Parenthood favorably, with 56 percent holding a strongly favorable opinion of Planned Parenthood. Additionally, 73 percent of voters support government funding for Planned Parenthood, which has been targeted in every version of legislation repealing the ACA. Not only do Massachusetts voters support Planned Parenthood, 78 percent of voters say they favor candidates who support Planned Parenthood, including 23 percent who say a candidate “must support Planned Parenthood” to earn their vote.
“These poll results confirm what we have seen across the country: voters stand with Planned Parenthood patients and reject any scheme that blocks patients from basic, preventive health care. We saw this in action last week when Americans mobilized and defeated Trumpcare. The people of Massachusetts don’t want extreme politicians who will strip away access to health care solely to make a political point; they want elected leaders who will dismantle barriers to care and build healthier communities.- Dr. Jennifer Childs-Roshak, President of the Planned Parenthood Advocacy Fund of Massachusetts
Voters’ support for Planned Parenthood reflects a widely held belief that everyone should have access to the care they need. In addition to supporting funding for services received at Planned Parenthood health centers specifically, 90 percent of voters support government funding to help low-income individuals access family planning services such as birth control, testing and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases, and cancer screenings. A strong majority of voters believe abortion should remain legal, with 53 percent saying abortion should be a safe and legal medical procedure for a woman to consider and an additional 16 percent indicating that their personal opposition to abortion does not trump their belief that government should not prevent a woman from making her own medical decisions. Government funding to help low-income individuals access abortion services is supported by 67 percent of voters. Only 10 percent of voters view abortion as wrong and say it should be illegal.
While Congressional Republicans repeatedly tried to undermine the Affordable Care Act’s requirement to cover essential benefits, including contraception and the Trump administration remains prepared to implement a federal rule allowing any employer to deny birth control coverage to their employees, Massachusetts voters staunchly reject these principles. In fact, 92 percent of voters believe contraception is a basic preventive service that should be affordable for everyone, and 81 percent support passage of a state law guaranteeing no-copay insurance coverage of contraception. The ACCESS bill, which would codify this protection into state law, is currently before the Massachusetts Legislature with 29 cosponsors in the Senate and 86 in the House.
Massachusetts voters have made clear that they don’t think a person’s ability to access the care they need should depend on where they live, how much money they make, or what their employer or Congressperson thinks. We are going to harness this community support as we fight Capitol Hill politics that target patients’ health care access and pursue state legislation that will ensure everyone can afford the birth control that is right for them.”- Dr. Jennifer Childs-Roshak, President of the Planned Parenthood Advocacy Fund of Massachusetts
The telephone poll, commissioned by the Planned Parenthood Advocacy Fund of Massachusetts and conducted by EMC research, surveyed 1,020 registered voters in Massachusetts from June 20 through June 29, 2017. There is a margin of error of ±3.1 percentage points.