Women’s Health and Economic Security for Women and Families are Potent Issues This Cycle

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Our poll[1] for EMILY’s List, American Women, and Planned Parenthood Action Fund of voters in 18 presidential and 2014 battleground states finds that the issues of women’s health and economic security for women and families are the best issues to motivate progressive base voters and to persuade swing voters this election cycle. 

Potential drop-off base voters are highly receptive to social pressure messaging about the adverse consequences of not voting, especially when connected to economic security for women and families. Messaging on women’s health and economic security for women and families will be key to turning out Democratic drop-off voters this fall.  

Moreover, progressive base voters are not the only ones who are compelled by messages focused on economic security for women and families and women’s health. What’s more, swing voters find messaging on protecting a woman’s access to safe, legal abortion and birth control among the most convincing reasons to vote for pro-women’s health candidates. In addition to turning out base voters, we can persuade swing voters – critical to winning in 2014 – with these same messages.

Key Findings

Reproductive rights are also a motivating factor for progressive base drop off voters, particularly when framed in the light of what anti-women’s health politicians are trying to take away. Drop-off voters were motivated by the chance to vote against anti-choice politicians (70% very motivating), even more so than they were by the chance to vote for pro-choice ones (66% very motivating). 

Progressive base drop-off voters become more enthusiastic and more likely to vote after hearing messages on women’s health and economic security for women and families. After voters hear a series of motivational messages – the most motivating of which are about women’s health and economic security for women and families – the percent of voters who rank their enthusiasm for voting this fall at a 5 or less out of 10 plummets from 23% to 12%. And by the end of a survey, we see a four-point gain in the percent of drop-off voters who now say they are “almost certain” to vote in November (from 63% to 67%).

The negative consequences of not voting, especially threats to middle class economic stability, are extremely motivating to base drop-off voters.  The idea that if you don’t vote, you can’t complain about the policies you don’t like, resonated with these voters. Particularly motivating was the idea that sitting at home means missing out on a chance to demand a raise in the minimum wage or an end to gender discrimination in pay.

The same positive messages that worked with drop-off base voters resonate with swing voters. Once again, messaging on a woman’s right to choose (44% convincing) and raising the minimum wage (39% very convincing) were the top testing reasons to vote for a Democrat, albeit with less intensity, for these likely voters.

Swing voters move towards a pro-woman’s health and economic security candidate on the generic ballot after our messaging on women’s health and economic security for women and families. After swing voters hear both progressive and conservative messages – the most persuasive of which are about women’s health and economic security for women and families –  we move from 37% Democratic / 32% Republican on the generic ballot to 44% Democratic / 35% Republican, for a net gain of four points towards a Democrat.

Appendix A: Women’s Health and Economic Messages Resonate with Progressive Base Drop-off Voters

In 2012, we made history by turning out in record numbers to elect candidates who fight for us, not the wealthy and special interests. The job is not done yet, there are still too many politicians who try to stand in the way of helping families. With issues like equal pay for women, minimum wage, and other policies that help women and their families, there is more to do. It is critical that we keep voting to help working families get ahead.

 

% Very motivating reason to vote

Total

74%

Whites

73%

African Americans

81%

Hispanics

69%

Men

70%

Women

77%

African American women

81%

Hispanic women

73%

White millennials

81%

Unmarried women

84

When we do not vote, we send a message that we are happy with things as they are and do not want them to change. With so many problems facing working families, like being pushed into part-time jobs, low wages, while the cost of everyday things like gas and groceries keep rising. We need to send the message that we deserve better. 

 

% Very motivating reason to vote

Total

74%

Whites

65%

African Americans

86%

Hispanics

62%

Men

66%

Women

72%

African American women

88%

Hispanic women

70%

White millennials

57%

Unmarried women

75%

We can vote against the politicians who want to let employers decide what health coverage a woman gets. They think they can dictate to women what should be their own personal healthcare decisions, who want to outlaw safe, legal abortion make it harder for women to have access to affordable birth control, and try to cut women and families off from the preventive care that Planned Parenthood health centers provide like lifesaving cervical and breast cancer screenings.

 

% Very motivating reason to vote

Total

70%

Whites

69%

African Americans

82%

Hispanics

61%

Men

70%

Women

70%

African American women

79%

Hispanic women

58%

White millennials

78%

Unmarried women

71%



[1] Anzalone Liszt Grove Research conducted a telephone survey of 1,000 drop-off voters in 18 battleground states, including oversamples of 100 Hispanic drop-off voters and 400 likely 2014 swing voters. Interviews were conducted August 4-13, 2014. The margin of error for the sample as a whole is plus or minus 3.1 percentage points at the 95% level of confidence. The margin of error for subgroups varies and is higher. Drop-off sample was determined by vote history, vote propensity and partisan scores. Swing sample was determined by partisan scores. The battleground states are: CO, FL, GA, IA, KY,  MA, MI, MN, NC, NH, NM, NV, OH, PA, TX, VA, WI, and WV.

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