Roe v. Wade was top health story on voters’ minds this year: analysis


(The Hill) – The U.S. Supreme Court overturning the constitutional right to abortion was the top health-care story on voter’s minds this year, according to a Morning Consult analysis published Monday.

The survey firm reported about 71 percent of voters said they heard “a lot” about the high court’s controversial ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which overturned Roe v. Wade in June after nearly 50 years of precedent protecting the right to an abortion.

Another 60 percent of voters said they heard a lot about the baby formula shortage in the spring, the second top story on the minds of Americans this year, Morning Consult poll noted.

And 41 percent of voters said the same for President Biden testing positive for COVID-19 in the summer.

Overall, the novel coronavirus dominated health care news coverage this year, according to Morning Consult. Abortion stories followed, including the Senate blocking an abortion rights bill and the leak of the Dobbs decision, both in May.

Kansas voters protecting abortion rights by rejecting a constitutional amendment in August was also a top story among Americans surveyed.

Abortion became a hot-button topic after the leak of the Dobbs decision, with Democrats campaigning hard on the issue ahead of the midterm elections, putting Republicans on the defensive.

Democrats outperformed expectations on Election Day, in part because of abortion, which was listed by 27 percent of voters in exit polls as a major issue, only behind inflation.

Democratic voters were also much more likely to hear about abortion issues than Republican voters, usually by double-digit margins, according to the Morning Consult poll.

Morning Consult cited surveys conducted throughout the year among 2,000 voters with margins of error of 2 percentage points.

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