Poll: Attacks on Planned Parenthood backfire in Maine

Poll: Attacks on Planned Parenthood backfire in Maine

A new poll just released by Hart Research has found that 70% of Maine voters oppose the attempt by congressional Republicans to end all government funding for Planned Parenthood, with 55% strongly opposed. Only 23% of respondents said they were in favor of defunding the organization.

The show of support for Planned Parenthood comes after Second-District Representative Bruce Poliquin voted in favor of eliminating federal funding for cancer screenings, birth control and other services available through the organization’s clinics (shortly after saying he wouldn’t do so). Three state legislators have also announced their intention to attempt to defund the organization at the state level.

“Today’s poll confirms that efforts to defund Planned Parenthood are deeply out of step with the views of Maine voters, who see Planned Parenthood as an essential health care provider and one of the few affordable options available to women,” said Nicole Clegg, Vice President of Public Policy for Planned Parenthood of Northern New England. “Mainers see through the political agenda of politicians who are using these deceptive attacks to target Planned Parenthood — whether in Congress or the Legislature.”

The poll of 501 voters was conducted on behalf of Planned Parenthood Action Fund from September 18th to 21st and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.5%, ninety-five times out of a hundred. Hart has significant experience polling Maine voters for candidate and issue campaigns.

According to the poll, a larger majority of Maine voters, 77%, oppose risking a government shutdown in an attempt to defund Planned Parenthood.

Women are particularly supportive of the health care organization, and even a majority of Republican women oppose the effort to defund the clinics. That’s not surprising considering that one in five American women will receive care from Planned Parenthood at some point in their lives.

Full results and question wording are available here.

The Maine poll is consistent with national surveys, including a recent Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll conducted over a similar period, which found 61% of Americans opposed to eliminating federal funding for Planned Parenthood’s preventive services.

Planned Parenthood of Northern New England provided health care to more than 10,000 patients in Maine last year, including $3.5 million in free or discounted care for low-income Mainers. Thanks in large part to the work of Planned Parenthood, unintended pregnancy and abortion rates have declined significantly in Maine.

Photo of Planned Parenthood rally in Portland via Winter Wind Photography/Planned Parenthood

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