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Poll: Texans Support Abortion Rights in Extreme Cases

A majority of likely Texas voters support abortion rights in extreme circumstances, according to a Texas Lyceum Poll released Tuesday.

Abortion rights advocates gathered at the Texas Capitol in February to protest strict abortion regulations lawmakers approved in 2013 and the lingering effects of 2011 cuts to family planning services.

A majority of likely Texas voters support abortion rights in extreme circumstances, according to a Texas Lyceum Poll released Tuesday.

The poll showed 68 percent of likely voters believe abortion should be legal in cases of rape, incest or to protect the mother's life. There was little difference between Democrats and Republicans on that issue, said Daron Shaw, a professor at the University of Texas at Austin who conducted the poll. 

A lower number of respondents, 54 percent, believe abortion should be an option in instances with a “strong chance of serious defect in the baby," the poll said.

Other poll subjects included the Affordable Care Act, immigration and the major issues facing the nation:

  • The Affordable Care Act remained “unpopular with Texans,” the Lyceum's report on the poll said, with 52 percent of likely voters viewing it unfavorably.
  • On immigration, 56 percent of likely voters supported sending home unaccompanied minors from Central America who crossed the U.S. border in recent months.
  • The economy was the top national issue for those polled, for the fourth year in a row, followed by immigration and border security.

Texas Lyceum is a nonprofit public policy group with annual polls on state issues.

The poll surveyed 1,000 Texans in English and Spanish, about 70 percent of whom were likely voters. The poll took place from Sept. 11-25 and has a margin of error of +/- 3.1 percentage points. Among likely voters, 39 percent identified as Democrat, 50 percent Republican and 10 percent independent.

The Texas Lyceum Poll's numbers on the governor, lieutenant governor and U.S. Senate races are expected to be released Wednesday. 

Disclosure: The University of Texas at Austin is a corporate sponsor of The Texas Tribune. A complete list of Texas Tribune donors and sponsors can be viewed here.

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