Poll Finds Opposition Exceeds Support for Parental Notification Measure
Opposition to Proposition 73 exceeds support for the measure by about six percentage points, according to a new statewide poll by the nonpartisan Public Policy Institute of California, the Sacramento Bee reports (Delsohn, Sacramento Bee, 10/28).
Proposition 73, which will appear on the Nov. 8 special election ballot, would amend the state constitution to require health care providers to inform a parent or guardian 48 hours before performing an abortion on an unmarried minor. Under the measure, a girl could seek a judicial bypass and would receive no-cost legal counsel, a confidential hearing and a ruling within three days on whether she could receive an abortion without notifying her parents (California Healthline, 10/27).
According to the poll, 42% of respondents favor the initiative and 48% oppose it.
The poll is based on telephone calls from Oct. 16 to 23 to 1,079 state residents considered to be likely voters. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus three percentage points (Sacramento Bee, 10/28).
The complete poll results are available online.
The Sacramento Bee on Thursday published an analysis of the No on 73 campaign's first television advertisement, which was funded by Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California. The ad warns that girls under age 18 could turn to illegal or unsafe abortions if the abortion parental notification initiative is approved, the Bee reports.
According to a Bee analysis, the ad "makes the most emotional claim that has been repeated in the campaign to defeat Proposition 73," but opponents of the measure "provide no documented evidence or study indicating an increase in illegal or unsafe abortions." The opponents "acknowledge evidence of illegal or unsafe abortions is only anecdotal but note that such cases seldom receive attention," the Bee analysis states.
The Bee analysis includes a transcript of the ad (Hecht, Sacramento Bee, 10/28).
"The benefits of Proposition 73 outweigh the concerns," Stan Devereux, spokesperson for the Yes on Proposition 73 campaign, and Karen England, executive director of Capitol Resource Institute, write. Devereux and England add that "the initiative's biggest impact is likely to be behavioral" and could prevent minors from engaging in casual sex "knowing that, if they become pregnant, they will [be] held accountable through the process of parental notification" (Devereux/England, Sacramento Bee, 10/28).
Additional information on Proposition 73 is available online.