Priorities USA Study Finds Abortion Access is a Key Motivating Issue for Voters as SCOTUS Allows Roll Back of Abortion Rights

September 01, 2021

On the day the Supreme Court allowed a near-complete ban on abortion to take effect in Texas, Priorities USA announced initial findings from focus groups which indicate that protecting abortion rights is a highly motivating issue for key constituencies of voters. The study was conducted in August in partnership with Garin-Hart-Yang Research and Global Strategy Group and BSP.

The focus groups were conducted with new Biden voters, who voted for President Biden in 2020 but did not vote in 2016. All participants live in 2022 battleground states and identified themselves as infrequent voters.

When prompted with current and potential Republican attacks, nearly every respondent in groups that included young voters (aged 18-29) and Black voters of all ages was highly concerned about Republican efforts to restrict reproductive rights. Respondents demonstrated that they were nearly as concerned about Republican attacks on the right to choose as they are about GOP attempts to curb efforts to fight COVID-19.

These preliminary findings indicate that when access to abortion is on the line, new Biden voters are more likely to see their vote as important and necessary. By leaning into their robust support for reproductive rights and effectively communicating Republican hostility on this issue, Democrats can better position themselves to engage this crucial group of voters ahead of 2022.

This study was conducted as part of a larger exploration of voters’ priorities and concerns on a variety of issues ahead of the midterm elections. The focus groups were conducted among young voters, Black voters, and Latino voters in both English and Spanish. Priorities USA will release a complete analysis of the findings in the coming weeks.

“Democratic voters are passionately concerned about Republican efforts to restrict the right to choose,” said Danielle Butterfield, Executive Director of Priorities USA. “Our findings indicate that the GOP tactic of restricting abortion access both through state legislatures and the courts has not gone unnoticed by the crucial bloc of voters Democrats need to engage this election cycle. With the Supreme Court lurching farther to the right and refusing to protect Roe v. Wade in Texas, it is more important than ever that Democrats stand up and fight for access to necessary health care.”