Poll: Majority of Likely Voters Oppose Taxpayer Funding of Abortion

Lauretta Brown | October 28, 2016 | 12:03pm EDT
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(AP Photo)

(CNSNews.com) – A new poll conducted by Politico and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health showed that the majority of likely voters, 58 percent, opposed the use of federal funds through Medicaid to pay for abortion.

The poll, released Wednesday, asked, “Medicaid is the largest government program that pays for health care for low-income people. Currently the federal government prohibits the use of federal funds to pay for abortions under Medicaid. Do you favor or oppose changing this policy in order to allow Medicaid funds to be used to pay for abortions?”

Only 36 percent of likely voters overall favored allowing Medicaid funding to be used for abortion services, and 58 percent opposed.

Notably, the survey found that “voters making more than $75,000 were more supportive of using Medicaid funds for abortion services (45% favor) than those making $25,000 or less (24% favor).”

Clinton voters were more supportive of using Medicaid funding for abortions with 57 percent supporting and 36 percent opposed. Trump voters were overwhelmingly against the use of taxpayer funds for abortion with just 19 percent supporting and 77 percent opposed.

The poll “was conducted September 14-21, 2016 with 1,492 likely voters (those who said they were registered to vote and were either absolutely certain they would vote in the 2016 presidential election or had already voted).”

The findings mirror a July Marist poll that found that 62 percent of Americans oppose taxpayer funding of abortion, a statistic that the 2017 March for Life will highlight in January.

The Hyde Amendment ban on federal funding of most abortions has been in place for 40 years. This year, Democrats have calledfor an end to it in their party platform, and Hillary Clinton has advocated ending the Hyde Amendment on the campaign trail.

Robert Blendon, the Harvard professor of health policy and political analysis who conducted the poll, told Politico that Hillary Clinton is advocating to end the Hyde Amendment ban on taxpayer funding of abortion despite the divisiveness of the issue because her supporters are going to want progress on the issue.

“She put this in [the platform] because activist Democrats care about it, and if she wins, it’s not enough to say, ‘We’re not going to defund Planned Parenthood,’” Blendon said. “She has to make some positive step.”’

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