News Release: Polling Indicates Wide Voter Support for Restrictions on Abortion

Data Show Majority of Pro-Choice and Prop 3 Voters Support Parental Consent, Safety Standards

Michigan voters support long-standing regulations on abortion.

May 16, 2023

(Lansing, Mich.) — The legislative majority and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer would be going against the will of Michigan voters — and for the Governor, her own stated position — if legislation advances to remove the requirement that parents give consent for their children to undergo abortion, according to polling data released today by Michigan Catholic Conference (MCC).

When it comes to parental consent requirements for abortion, 67% of Michigan voters support the policy, along with 61% of pro-choice voters and 60% of voters who said they voted yes on Proposal 3 last fall, according to a Marketing Resource Group (MRG) poll commissioned by MCC.

Those numbers are similar when it comes to voter support of the current requirement for a 24-hour waiting period to provide women with informed consent on the procedure. Some 63% of Michigan voters support the current law, while 65% of pro-choice voters and 65% of Proposal 3 supporters also agree.

And, almost unanimously, voters want abortion clinics to be licensed and inspected by the state for the purpose of meeting basic health and sanitation standards: 90% of Michigan voters overall, 97% of pro- choice voters and 97% of Proposal 3 supporters expect abortion facilities to meet basic public health criteria.

Pro-choice voters support abortion regulations.

So do people who voted yes on Proposal 3.

“Lawmakers must decide if they stand with a majority of voters who support reasonable guardrails such as parental rights, informed consent, and health and sanitation standards for abortion facilities,” said Rebecca Mastee, J.D., policy advocate for MCC. “Even pro-choice voters and those who supported Proposal 3 last November have made clear that legislative protections for parents, women and children should remain in place.”

These numbers are being shared in light of reports of a renewed push by abortion advocates to end parental consent requirements, 24-hour waiting periods to provide informed consent, and licensing and inspection standards for most abortion clinics.

Pro-abortion rights supporters regularly state that abortion should be treated ‘like other forms of health care,’ and that abortion is a ‘procedure,’ even though medical services and procedures involve health care professionals providing informed consent to their patients and obtaining parental consent for procedures performed on minors.

“If abortion rights advocates want abortion to be treated like any other medical procedure, why would they want to get rid of informed consent and parental consent for minors — which are both standard and expected medical practices?” Mastee said.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer herself is on record for preserving parental consent for a minor’s abortion. When asked about parental consent in a 2022 interview with The Detroit News editorial board, the Governor acknowledged that parental consent “is a part of the law that we have on the books,” and added that “what we have works” and “I would be interested in preserving it.”

“Rather than push dangerous and unpopular policies that prioritize the abortion industry over women and children, we encourage the legislature to allocate its time and energy to issues that promote the common good and uphold human dignity,” Mastee said.

Note: Data is from Marketing Resource Group’s spring 2023 poll, which was conducted March 13–17 of this year and yielded 599 responses from Michigan voters with a margin of error of 4%. Three-quarters of the responses came from cell phones.

Michigan Catholic Conference is the official public policy voice of the Catholic Church in this state.

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