Report Reveals Surge in Democratic Support for Abortion Rights Post-Dobbs Decision

A recent report from the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) reveals a significant shift in Democratic voters’ attitudes towards abortion rights. Since the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which enabled abortion restrictions nationwide, more Democrats are considering abortion a crucial voting issue.

PRRI CEO Melissa Deckman emphasized this transformation, stating, “So the salience of abortion as an issue is really different for Democratic voters this election cycle,” attributing it directly to the political and policy aftermath of Dobbs. The report also highlights a widening disparity between Republicans and Democrats regarding abortion views.

Deckman noted that the growing partisan gap is primarily driven by Democrats’ increasing support for abortion rights over the past decade, contrasting with relatively stable Republican sentiments. The study reveals a substantial rise in Democratic backing for abortion rights, with 86% of surveyed Democrats in 2023 expressing support, up from 71% in 2010. Independent voters also show growing support.

Exit polls following the Dobbs decision confirm these trends, indicating widespread backing for abortion rights across various states and an escalating number of voters prioritizing abortion as a key voting factor. Notably, women and younger voters, particularly those aged 18 to 29, exhibit heightened motivation on the issue, especially within the Democratic demographic.

Nationwide, the survey indicates that 64% of voters advocate for abortion to be mostly or always legal, while 35% favor making it mostly or always illegal. Even in states with Republican-dominated governments, the majority of voters support legal abortion, with minimal backing for complete bans.

Deckman highlighted the inconsistency between state policies and public opinion, stating, “In no state does anywhere near a majority of state residents support the banning of abortions, yet we have a policy landscape in which some states have effectively made the procedure almost impossible to access.” She underscored that the restrictive measures enacted in many Republican-controlled state legislatures do not align with the preferences of their citizens.