Exit Polling Data Help Explain Votes on Assisted Suicide, Abortion Measures

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Nov 5, 2008   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Exit Polls Data Help Explain Votes on State Assisted Suicide, Abortion Measures

by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
November 5
, 2008

Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Voters in five states dealt with more pro-life issues than those at stake in the presidential election as they considered votes on abortion, assisted suicide and bioethics issues. Exit polling data in those states help explain why voters made the decisions they did on the ballot measures.

In Washington, voters make the state the second after Oregon to legalize assisted suicide.

Exit polls show I-1000 received more support from men than women, and that younger and older voters were less likely to support assisted suicide than middle-aged voters.

Conservatives opposed assisted suicide by a 66-34 percent margin while liberals backed it 81-19 and moderates support it 63-37. The numbers were similar for the partisan breakdowns.

Protestants and Catholics were evenly split on the ballot measure 50-50 and the 28 percent of non-religious voters and those other non-Christian religions supported it strongly and paved the way for its approval.

In California, voters narrowly defeated the third attempt to approve a state measure allowing parents to be notified when their minor daughter is considering an abortion.

Men supported the measure 51-40 while women opposed it 52-48. White voters were less likely to support parental notification (46-54% against) while Hispanics (55-45), blacks (54-46) and Asians were more likely (58-42).

Younger voters 18-29 opposed the measure while retirees and Generation Xers were more likely. Democrats opposed it 63-37, Republicans backed it 70-30 and independent voters opposed it 54-46.

In South Dakota, where voters defeated an abortion ban for the second time, men and women were evenly split against it while younger voters were more opposed than older voters.

Conservatives and Republicans were more likely to support Measure 11 than liberals and Democrats, but pro-life advocates failed to get a majority of independents and moderates to support it.

Finally, in Michigan, men and women were evenly supportive of Proposition 2, to allow destructive research on human embryos.

Younger voters backed it strongly while middle-age voters were split and older voters opposed it. African-American voters supported the ballot proposal in slightly larger numbers than white voters.

As was the case in other state ballot measures, conservatives and Republicans were more likely to take the pro-life position on the proposal than Democrats and liberals. Moderate and independent voters leaned towards it.

Also similar to other states, evangelical voters were opposed to Proposition 2 by a 70-30 percentage point margin.

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