Most California Voters Support Limits on Abortion
As California prepares for a referendum on abortion rights this November, most voters in the state – including many who consider themselves pro-choice – oppose late-term abortion.
A new telephone and online survey by Rasmussen Reports and Real Impact finds that only 13% of California Likely Voters believe abortion should be legal at any time during pregnancy up to the moment of birth. Fourteen percent (14%) think abortion should be legal up to six months of pregnancy, while 32% say abortion should be legal up to three months of pregnancy. Nineteen percent (19%) believe abortion should only be legal during the first month of pregnancy, while 14% think all abortions should be illegal. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
In November, California voters will decide Proposition 1, which would amend the state constitution: “The state shall not deny or interfere with an individual’s reproductive freedom in their most intimate decisions, which includes their fundamental right to choose to have an abortion.” Sixty-six percent (66%) of California voters support Proposition 1, including 49% who Strongly Support it. Twenty-seven percent (27%) oppose the proposition, including 17% who Strongly Oppose it.
“Gavin Newsom’s radical liberal government is trying to sneak past the people of California a constitutional amendment that would pave the way for abortion without limitations,” said Pastor Jack Hibbs of Calvary Chapel Chino Hills. “Proposition 1 on the 2022 ballot – which places no limits on abortion – is way too extreme even in a state where the majority say they are pro-choice. I believe abortion should never be enshrined in our constitution and allowing late-term abortion is especially evil.”
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The survey of 1,006 California Likely Voters was conducted on August 10-11, 2022 by Rasmussen Reports and Real Impact. The margin of sampling error is +/- 2 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
Twice as many California voters consider themselves pro-choice (62%) as consider themselves pro-life (31%). However, even among pro-choice voters, only 18% believe abortion should be legal at any time during pregnancy up to the moment of birth. A majority (51%) of pro-choice voters don’t think abortion should be legal past three months into a pregnancy, while another 19% say it should be legal up to six months of a pregnancy.
While Proposition 1 sets no limit on how late in a pregnancy the “fundamental right to choose to have an abortion” should extend, many California voters who support the measure think there should be limits on late-term abortion. For example, among voters who think abortion should only be legal up to three months of a pregnancy, 77% support Proposition 1, including 51% who Strongly Support the ballot measure.
Among other findings of the Rasmussen Reports/Real Impact survey:
– Both President Joe Biden and Gov. Gavin Newsome enjoy majority support among California voters, 53% of whom approve of the job Biden has been doing as president and 54% of whom approve of Newsome’s job performance.
– Fifty-two percent (52%) of California voters disapprove of the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling that overturned the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, so that each state can now determine its own laws regarding abortion. Forty-five percent (45%) approve of overturning Roe v. Wade.
– An overwhelming majority (73%) of California voters believe abortion should be legal only under certain circumstances after a fetus could survive outside the mother. That includes 31% who think such abortions should be illegal in all circumstances. Just 20% favor legal abortion without limits after fetal viability.
– Sixty-three percent (63%) say a fetus has the right to life at six months, including 21% who think the right to life begins at three months and 27% who believe the fetus has a right to life from the moment of conception. More Hispanic voters than whites, blacks or other minorities believe in the right of life at conception. More evangelical Christians (44%) than Catholics (33%) believe that the right to life begins at conception.
– There is little variability among whites, blacks and Hispanics on whether they consider themselves pro-choice, but other minorities are significantly more likely to call themselves pro-life. More blacks (72%) and Hispanics (70%) than whites (63%) or other minorities (57%) support Proposition 1.
Even many voters who call themselves “pro-choice” on the issue of abortion have concerns when underage girls are involved.
Even though more voters identify as pro-choice than pro-life, fully half of them approve of the recent Supreme Court ruling that overturned the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision.
Additional information from this survey and a full demographic breakdown are available to the public as well as to Platinum Members.
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The survey of 1,006 California Likely Voters was conducted on August 10-11, 2022 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 2 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
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