Poll: Women mainly concerned about economy

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Michael Bastasch DCNF Managing Editor
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Six in ten women voters say the economy and jobs are what they want to hear candidates talk about, according to a May tracking poll by the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Only 5 percent say women’s health or women’s issues are what they want candidates to focus on.

The poll also showed declining support for the health care law. Favorable views for President Obama’s signature Affordable Care Act (ACA) dropped 5 percentage points this month, meaning unfavorable views of ACA outnumber favorable views 44 percent to 37 percent.

A majority of people, however, still oppose the congressional Republican strategy of defunding the law. 58 percent of voters are opposed to defunding the law as a way of stopping some or all of the law from being put into place, while only 32 percent approve of it.

Women’s health issues still play a role, but a minor one, the poll shows. 31 percent of women believe there is a “wide-scale effort to limit women’s reproductive health choices and services, such as abortion, family planning and contraception.” 45 percent say that some groups want to limit women’s reproductive health choices, but deny a wide-scale effort.

Liberal women are more likely than conservative women to perceive a widespread effort to limit choices in women’s reproductive health care and more likely to say they’ve taken action related to these issues, like trying to influence a friend or family member, donating to a reproductive health-focused non-profit or contacting an elected official.

“It appears that reproductive health is likely to play at most a small role in the upcoming presidential election, as women (and all voters) continue to focus on the economy above all else,” the poll notes. “To the extent that the issue plays any role in the campaign, the advantage in terms of female voters’ trust goes to Barack Obama and the Democrats over Mitt Romney and the Republicans.”

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