Poll: One-third of women believe ‘war on women’ charges

A 45 percent plurality, meanwhile, said that only some groups want to limit reproductive health services for women and that their effort is not a broad one.

Only 7 percent said there has been no effort to curb women’s access to certain health services.

The poll also found that about four in 10 Americans have felt strongly enough about the debate to take some action, such as donating money to a women’s health group or attempting to influence a friend’s opinion on the debate.

This figure was highest among liberal women over a range of responses. Among several sub-groups, women who lean left were most likely to try to sway someone in the debate (30 percent), contact a lawmaker (20 percent) or donate to a candidate (15 percent) or women’s health organization (21 percent).

Organizations that work to elect Democrats have consistently raised funds using the “war on women” charge following debates over Planned Parenthood and the Obama administration’s birth-control coverage mandate.

This week, blast emails from both the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and EMILY’s List, which funds female candidates who support abortion rights, used the refrain while soliciting money.

Both parties have seen coffers swell, and Thursday’s poll suggests that the women’s-health debate has prompted a number of political donations.

Seven percent of the total public told the group they have given money to a candidate or political group because of women’s-health issues. This figure doubled, meanwhile, for donations to groups focused specifically on women’s health.

Kaiser’s survey also asked if debates over women’s healthcare have changed whom respondents will support at the ballot box.

Ten percent of the public said yes. This number was about equal to the portion of centrist women (9 percent) — a crucial voting bloc for 2012 — who said they had also changed their minds in response to the debates. The survey did not appear to ask which way voters shifted.

The results come on the heels of Planned Parenthood’s endorsement of President Obama on Wednesday.

The group called Obama a “champion for women’s health” and launched a $1.4 million ad buy criticizing presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney for opposing abortion rights. The ads will target female votes in the key swing states of Florida, Iowa and Virginia.

Kaiser’s survey was conducted May 8-14 of 1,218 adults, according to the group. Its margin of error is 3 points, though a note on methodology stated that this figure might be higher for women and other sub-groups.


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