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80 Percent Of North Carolina Voters Don’t Want Abortion Restrictions Tacked Onto Unrelated Bills

By Tara Culp-Ressler  

"80 Percent Of North Carolina Voters Don’t Want Abortion Restrictions Tacked Onto Unrelated Bills"

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Activists protest North Carolina's motorcycle safety bill (Credit: Planned Parenthood Health Systems in North Carolina)

The GOP-controlled North Carolina legislature is currently attempting to push through stringent abortion restrictions by any means possible. First, they tried attaching them to a totally unrelated anti-Sharia measure. Next, they tacked them onto a bill otherwise related to motorcycle safety. But voters aren’t exactly pleased with those efforts.

According to a new poll from Public Policy Polling (PPP), just 34 percent of North Carolinians support the proposed abortion restrictions, which would impose unnecessary regulations on abortion providers and restrict access to medication abortion. Forty seven percent oppose them — and a full 80 percent think it’s “inappropriate” to combine abortion restrictions with unrelated measures on sharia law or motorcycle safety.

North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory (R) made a campaign promise not to sign any additional abortion restrictions into law, in favor of focusing on economic issues. He threatened to veto the abortion restrictions attached to the anti-Sharia bill, which is what prompted lawmakers to add them to a transportation bill instead. Now, despite his initial promise to avoid reproductive restrictions, McCrory has suggested he might consider signing the motorcycle safety bill with the abortion-related amendments intact.

The governor might want to reconsider that stance after taking a look at his recent approval ratings, however. The PPP poll finds that McCrory’s popularity has taken a tumble. For the first time since taking office, he now has a negative approval rating — just 40 percent of voters approve of the job he’s doing, compared to 49 percent who disapprove. And only 68 percent of the people who voted to elect McCrory still think he’s doing a good job.

The dissatisfaction with North Carolina’s current legislative priorities is widespread. For the past several months, thousands of protesters have been rallying against the radically right-wing North Carolina legislature in a series of “Moral Monday” protests. Over 60 pro-choice activists, including the president of Planned Parenthood of Central North Carolina, were recently arrested during one of those protests. PPP finds that North Carolinians support the protesters over the legislature by a 47/41 margin.

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