Pennsylvania voters emphasize abortion rights in upcoming election, poll finds

When the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, it jump started the midterm elections with a thunderclap. Now, with just weeks left until the election, abortion rights appear to be a defining issue for voters, especially for a group of Delaware County moms. 

While enjoying the sunshine at the park Monday afternoon, Tamara Jenkins told FOX 29's Jeff Cole that she's going to vote with her 8-year-old daughter, Sienna, in mind. 

"That could save her life one day. Abortion is so much more than just sleeping around and deciding that you don't want that child," said Jenkins. 

A recent Fox News poll of 1,008 Pennsylvania voters who are planning to vote in the race for U.S. Senate, shows that abortion ranks second in importance behind the twin issues of inflation and preserving American democracy. 

In the races for governor and U.S. Senate, the differences are stark. Democrat for governor, Josh Shapiro, supports the Pennsylvania law allowing abortion up to the 24th week. Republican Doug Mastriano is a foe of abortion, who has implied he would support a so-called "heartbeat bill," which bans the abortion procedure after six weeks. Democratic Senate candidate, John Fetterman is pro-choice, while republican, Mehmet Oz opposes abortion. 

RELATED: InsiderAdvantage/FOX 29 poll shows Fetterman leading Oz, Shapiro in double-digit lead over Mastriano

Val Price, a mother of two young boys from Wynnewood, holds firm in her belief that abortion rights are women's rights.

"I would not vote for anyone who doesn't support abortion rights for women," said Price. 

A recent FOX 29 program on abortion showed activists on both sides of the issue coming to an agreement: that abortion will be the factor that drives voters to the polls. 

"We're hearing in every race across the state and on the congressional level that abortion is the issue that voters are concerned about," said Lindsey Mauldin of Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pa.


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President of the Pro-Life Union of Greater Philadelphia, Tom Stevens, says he thinks people are more motivated to vote now more than ever because they're realizing the importance of protecting the right to an abortion. 

"It’s made them afraid, said Stevens. "It’s got them saying, ‘We’ve got to protect this right.’ And our side, we may be a little apathetic."

While some people, like Price and Jenkins have their minds made up, some mothers, like Julianne Osborn, remain conflicted. 

Osborn, the mother of 5-year-old, Scarlet, and 2-year-old, Gage, says she wants to ensure her daughter's right to decide is protected, but she says she also understands why some people are opposed to it.

The 2022 Pennsylvania gubernatorial elections will be held on November 8. You can keep up with the latest details on the election here.