Poll: More Americans, Women Oppose Employer Contraception Mandate Than Support It

Chuck Ross Investigative Reporter
Font Size:

A majority of Americans — including a majority of women, independents, and young voters — oppose the contraception mandate created by Obamacare, according to a new poll set to be released Tuesday by the Family Research Council.

Fifty-three percent of likely U.S. voters oppose forcing employers to provide plans that various birth control methods, according to the poll, conducted earlier this month. Forty-three percent support doing so.

Under Obamacare, employers’ insurance plans — including nearly all employer-sponsored plans and those purchased in the individual marketplace — must provide numerous preventative care services, including birth-control pills and emergency contraceptives.

Employers who fail to offer such plans face a $100 fine per day per employee. Women can also not be charged for the methods and contraceptives.

Despite being a bargain for women, fifty percent of women oppose the mandate while only 45 percent support it, according to the poll, conducted by WPA Research on behalf of the conservative Family Research Council. Thirty-six percent of women strongly oppose the mandate, while 29 percent strongly support it.

Other groups that tend to support Democratic candidates oppose the mandate as well, according to the poll.

Forty-nine percent of adults between 18 and 44 years old oppose, and 47 percent support the mandate. Hispanics are split evenly on the issue, though slightly more in the heavily Democratic group strongly oppose the mandate than strongly support it.

The contraception mandate has been one of Obamacare’s most contentious issues. Churches and other religious employers were granted immunity from the mandate, but reprieve did not extend to faith-based non-profits, religious organizations, or private firms owned by employers who oppose the use of contraception as a matter of faith.

Arts and crafts retailer Hobby Lobby and the Little Sisters of the Poor — a Catholic charity run by nuns — have challenged the mandate. Both have cases pending before the U.S. Supreme Court.

A survey published last month in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that 69 percent of respondents favored a mandate to require contraception coverage. However, the survey did not frame the mandate in terms of fines imposed on employers who chose not to provide such plans.

“Americans should not be forced to violate their religious beliefs to purchase health insurance, hold a job, or operate a business in their country,” said Family Research Council President Tony Perkins in a statement.

“Freedom of religion, the American people believe, extends to the freedom to practice your religion in your healthcare plan, as outlined by the First Amendment of the Constitution and illustrated in these poll results,” he said.

Follow Chuck on Twitter