Washington, DC — A new poll conducted by Hart Research Associates on behalf of the Planned Parenthood Action Fund shows strong public support for and trust in Planned Parenthood in the wake of outrageous political attacks from anti-abortion extremists. The poll also demonstrates overwhelming voter opposition to Republican proposals to end all federal funding for preventive care services like cancer screenings and family planning at Planned Parenthood health centers across the country. In addition, the poll’s findings serve as a warning from voters that continuing political attacks on women’s access to health care will have negative political consequences. Finally, the poll finds that voters believe Congressional investigations into Planned Parenthood are largely motivated by politics, and doubt their impartiality.
Key findings of the poll include:
- Opposition to Republican rush to defund: 64 percent of voters, including 72 percent of Independents, do not agree with Congressional Republicans who say that “there should be an immediate vote to end all government funding for Planned Parenthood, including for services Planned Parenthood provides, such as cancer screenings and family planning” because of the videos. In general, 63 percent of voters oppose proposals to end all federal funding for Planned Parenthood, including 47 percent who strongly oppose it.
- Political attacks on women’s health are a political loser: By 58 percent to 26 percent, voters say they would support a candidate who favors continued funding of Planned Parenthood over one who favors ending government funding; 16 percent are undecided or say the issue would not affect their vote.
- Skepticism about impartiality of Congressional investigations: Fifty-seven percent of voters express skepticism about the motivations of the Republican leadership in this matter, and they say the Republican leadership is seeking these hearings mainly because it has a political agenda it is trying to push. By contrast, only 28 percent of voters believe that Republicans are seeking these hearings because “they have legitimate concerns about Planned Parenthood and want to learn the truth.
A full memo from Hart Research Associates can be found HERE.
Quote from Cecile Richards, President of Planned Parenthood Action Fund:
"Today's poll shows much of what we already knew: that defunding Planned Parenthood is a losing proposition not just for the millions of men and women who come through Planned Parenthood's doors every day, but also with voters who don't want to see their politicians focused on restricting lifesaving care. Planned Parenthood is America’s most trusted reproductive health care provider. One in five women has relied on Planned Parenthood for care in her lifetime. Every year, 2.7 million women, men, and young people turn to Planned Parenthood for basic, high-quality, preventive care — lifesaving cancer screenings, STI testing and treatment, birth control, and well-woman exams. The anti-abortion extremists behind these videos don't have credibility with the American people, and neither do the politicians behind these political attacks against women’s health and the care Planned Parenthood provides.”
Quote from Geoff Garin, President of Hart Research Associates:
“Americans continue to support funding for Planned Parenthood despite the debate engendered by the release of these videos,” said Geoff Garin, President of Hart Research Associates. “Voters respond favorably to Planned Parenthood’s core message about the videos and its policies with regard to fetal tissue donations. The renewed attacks on Planned Parenthood are likely to become a substantial political liability for Republicans, especially among women, because the GOP’s support for defunding Planned Parenthood is deeply at odds with the position of swing voters.”
Background: Planned Parenthood’s Services
In 2013, Planned Parenthood served 2.7 million women, men, and young people.
- 1.5 million of those patients received services through Title X — the nation’s family planning program.
- At least 78 percent of Planned Parenthood’s health care patients live with incomes of 150 percent of the federal poverty level or less (the equivalent of $36,375 a year for a family of four in 2015).
- At least 60 percent of the patients Planned Parenthood serves each year benefit from public health coverage programs such as the nation’s family planning program and Medicaid.
- In addition, Planned Parenthood affiliates reached 1.5 million young people and families through sex education and outreach.
- Approximately 1 in 5 women has relied on a Planned Parenthood health center for care in her lifetime
In 2013, Patients came into Planned Parenthood health centers 4.6 million times for services.
- 2.2 million, or nearly 52 percent of all patient visits, were with patients enrolled in Medicaid.
In 2013, Planned Parenthood provided 10.6 million services.
- Nearly 400,000 Pap tests
- Nearly 500,000 breast exams
- Nearly 4.5 million STI tests and treatments, including HIV tests
In 2013, Planned Parenthood affiliates received $528.4 million in government reimbursements and grants. The vast majority of that amount is reimbursement through Medicaid.
- Planned Parenthood affiliates are non-profit health care providers that receive reimbursements for providing preventive health care services like cancer screenings and birth control to low-income patients, just like other health care providers receive. Planned Parenthood’s national office and affiliates also receive funding from private sources, including foundations and individual supporters, which are essential because government funds do not fully cover the cost of care.
- All government funds that Planned Parenthood affiliates receive are restricted for specific purposes. Federal funds are prohibited from covering abortion — except in the dire circumstances of rape, incest, or when the life of the woman is in jeopardy. Planned Parenthood fully complies with this and all government restrictions.