FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 25, 2022
Media Contact: Dorrie Toney, [email protected]
ATLANTA — While voters in Georgia are divided on many issues, an August poll commissioned by the ACLU of Georgia shows that they are united in their support for the right to privacy.
Nearly 90% of likely Georgia voters say privacy should be respected when it comes to making decisions about their bodies. They are similarly aligned in their responses to other questions related to the state’s six-week abortion law (H.B. 481).
Poll findings show an overall lack of understanding about the criminal implications of the law. Nearly 70% of those polled do not believe a woman who suffers a miscarriage may be subject to investigations from authorities to determine if she instead had an abortion.
Similarly, 70% of Georgia voters do not know that physicians concerned about jeopardizing their medical license may withhold care from miscarriage patients. The numbers were nearly the same on other questions about legal implications of the law.
“The impact of the abortion law is forced pregnancy and this is simply out of step with the views of Georgia voters—they believe in the right to make personal, private decisions about their bodies,” said Andrea Young, Executive Director of ACLU of Georgia. “This poll shows how extreme the Georgia abortion ban is when compared to the preferences of most Georgians.”
Other poll findings:
- Slightly more than half of respondents (51%) disagree with the Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.
- When asked if Georgians should have the choice to have an abortion up to 20 weeks of pregnancy, nearly 45% responded, yes.
- Forty percent said they will vote for candidates who support a woman’s right to have an abortion.
- When asked if the government and law enforcement should have extended powers to search computers, phones, and apps, 70% disagree.
“Reproductive choice is positioned to be the determining matter in Georgia elections now and going into 2024,” said Fred Hicks, political consultant and pollster. “Georgia voters want candidates who support choice, privacy, and limiting the role and power of government when it comes to matters of reproductive health. Simply put, Georgia is not an anti-choice electorate.”
The survey of likely Georgia voters was conducted using live operators from August 4 through August 17, 2022. Participants were selected from a pool of registered voters with a history of voting in General, Primary and Runoff elections. They were randomly dialed and then weighted based on the projected turnout. Responses were collected using live operators who dialed cell phones and landlines. It should be noted that 40% of the respondents self-identified as Republican and 32% self-identified as Democrat, which likely means the results skew slightly more conservative than Georgia. Georgia tilted Republican by 1.5% in the 2018 election, as defined by candidate support, and slightly Democrat based on the 2020 General Election.
Three weeks after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals lifted a district court’s injunction, putting H.B. 481 into effect immediately. A week later, abortion providers and advocates filed a new state constitutional challenge, seeking to block the state’s six-week ban. A request to temporarily block the law was denied by a state court, but the challenge to the ban will proceed in state courts.