NPI's Cascadia Advocate

Offering commentary and analysis from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, The Cascadia Advocate provides the Northwest Progressive Institute's uplifting perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Monday, October 24th, 2022

More than three in five Washington voters support Patty Murray and Kim Schrier’s Let Doctors Provide Reproductive Health Care Act

Pro­posed leg­is­la­tion that would pro­tect health­care providers from being held crim­i­nal­ly liable for offer­ing repro­duc­tive care ser­vices by gov­ern­ments in states that have out­lawed abor­tion has the sup­port of more than three in five Wash­ing­ton vot­ers, with a major­i­ty (52%) strong­ly sup­port­ive, a poll con­duct­ed last week for the North­west Pro­gres­sive Insti­tute has found.

62% of 782 like­ly Wash­ing­ton State vot­ers sur­veyed Octo­ber 19th-20th, 2022 for NPI by Pub­lic Pol­i­cy Polling said they sup­port­ed Sen­a­tor Pat­ty Mur­ray and U.S. Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Kim Schri­er’s Let Doc­tors Pro­vide Repro­duc­tive Health Care Act (H.R. 8650 in the House and S.4723 in the Sen­ate).

Only 26% were opposed, while 12% said they were not sure.

“As the only pro-choice woman doc­tor in Con­gress, I will always defend wom­en’s access to a safe abor­tion,” Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Schri­er said in a state­ment to the North­west Pro­gres­sive Insti­tute. “Tar­get­ing doc­tors is anoth­er extreme tac­tic that Repub­li­can state leg­is­la­tures across the coun­try are using to restrict women from mak­ing their own health­care deci­sions. This impor­tant bill would pro­tect doc­tors’ abil­i­ty to per­form their duties as med­ical professionals.”

“It’s clear that Wash­ing­ton State vot­ers agree: Doc­tors shouldn’t be pun­ished for pro­vid­ing their patients with legal abor­tion care — full stop,” said Sen­a­tor Pat­ty Mur­ray in a state­ment to the North­west Pro­gres­sive Institute.

“The strong pub­lic sup­port for our leg­is­la­tion across Wash­ing­ton state reaf­firms what we know to be true: that doc­tors must be able to pro­vide repro­duc­tive health care with­out fear, and that deci­sions about preg­nan­cy belong to a woman and her doc­tor, her fam­i­ly, and her faith — not to politicians.”

First intro­duced in the Sen­ate by Sen­a­tors Pat­ty Mur­ray, Ben Ray Lujan, Alex Padil­la, and Jacky Rosen, the bill would, as sum­ma­rized by Schri­er’s office:

  • Pro­tect health care providers in states where abor­tion is legal from laws that try to pre­vent them from pro­vid­ing repro­duc­tive health care ser­vices or make them liable for pro­vid­ing those ser­vices to patients from any oth­er state
  • Pro­hib­it any fed­er­al funds from being used to pur­sue legal cas­es against indi­vid­u­als who access legal repro­duc­tive health care ser­vices or against health care providers in states where abor­tion is legal
  • Cre­ate a new grant pro­gram at the Depart­ment of Jus­tice to fund legal assis­tance or legal edu­ca­tion for repro­duc­tive health care ser­vice providers
  • Cre­ate a new grant pro­gram at the Depart­ment of Health and Human Ser­vices to sup­port health care providers in obtain­ing phys­i­cal, cyber, or data pri­va­cy secu­ri­ty upgrades nec­es­sary to pro­tect their prac­tice and patients
  • Pro­tect repro­duc­tive health care providers from being denied pro­fes­sion­al lia­bil­i­ty insur­ance cov­er­age because of legal ser­vices offered to patients

The Let Doc­tors Pro­vide Repro­duc­tive Health Care Act is endorsed by the Nation­al Women’s Law Cen­ter, Nation­al Fam­i­ly Plan­ning and Repro­duc­tive Health Asso­ci­a­tion, Planned Par­ent­hood Fed­er­a­tion of Amer­i­ca, Catholics for Choice, Nation­al Part­ner­ship for Women & Fam­i­lies, and Cen­ter for Repro­duc­tive Rights.

And now, thanks to our research, we know Wash­ing­ton vot­ers endorse it, too.

Here’s the text of the ques­tion we asked and the answers we received:

QUESTION: Leg­is­la­tion has been intro­duced in Con­gress called the Let Doc­tors Pro­vide Repro­duc­tive Health Care Act, which would pro­tect health­care providers in states where abor­tion remains legal from being held crim­i­nal­ly liable for offer­ing repro­duc­tive care ser­vices by gov­ern­ments in states that have out­lawed abor­tion. The bill would also fund legal assis­tance and edu­ca­tion for repro­duc­tive health­care ser­vice providers and pro­hib­it insur­ance com­pa­nies from deny­ing them lia­bil­i­ty cov­er­age because of the ser­vices they offer to patients. Do you strong­ly sup­port, some­what sup­port, some­what oppose, or strong­ly oppose the Let Doc­tors Pro­vide Repro­duc­tive Health Care Act?


  • Sup­port: 62% 
    • Strong­ly: 52%
    • Some­what: 10%
  • Oppose: 26%
    • Some­what: 7%
    • Strong­ly: 19%
  • Not sure: 12%

Our sur­vey of 782 like­ly 2022 Wash­ing­ton State midterm vot­ers was in the field from Wednes­day, Octo­ber 19th through Thurs­day, Octo­ber 20th. The sur­vey was con­duct­ed by Pub­lic Pol­i­cy Polling for the North­west Pro­gres­sive Insti­tute and has a mar­gin of error of +/- 3.5% at the 95% con­fi­dence interval.

It uti­lizes a blend­ed method­ol­o­gy, with auto­mat­ed phone calls to land­lines (50%) and text mes­sage answers from cell phone only respon­dents (50%).

More infor­ma­tion about the survey’s method­ol­o­gy is avail­able here.

In addi­tion to major­i­ty sup­port statewide, we also found major­i­ty sup­port at the con­gres­sion­al dis­trict lev­el, in Wash­ing­ton’s hot­ly con­test­ed 3rd Con­gres­sion­al Dis­trict (56% total) and the 8th Con­gres­sion­al Dis­trict, where Schri­er is seek­ing reelec­tion (62% total, match­ing the statewide finding).

Every sin­gle region in the state is sup­port­ive. 77% of King Coun­ty backs the Let Doc­tors Pro­vide Repro­duc­tive Health Care Act, along with 54% of North Puget Sound, 66% of the South Sound, 55% of the Olympic Penin­su­la and South­west Wash­ing­ton, and even 52% of East­ern and Cen­tral Washington.

Mur­ray and Schri­er’s oppo­nents Tiffany Smi­ley and Matt Larkin are stri­dent­ly opposed to repro­duc­tive rights, as are near­ly all Repub­li­cans across the coun­try. Larkin has said explic­it­ly he sup­ports a nation­wide ban on abor­tion with no excep­tions. Smi­ley has backed away from that posi­tion in an attempt to win over vot­ers, but both Demo­c­ra­t­ic and Repub­li­can activists have expressed the view that Smi­ley would vote for a ban if Mitch McConnell need­ed her to.

U.S. Senator Patty Murray and U.S. Representative Kim Schrier discuss reproductive rights

Dur­ing a joint appear­ance in Issaquah, Unit­ed States Sen­a­tor Pat­ty Mur­ray and Unit­ed States Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Kim Schri­er dis­cussed pro­tect­ing repro­duc­tive rights in the cur­rent 117th Con­gress and upcom­ing 118th Con­gress (Pho­to: Andrew Villeneuve/NPI)

The Let Doc­tors Pro­vide Repro­duc­tive Health Care Act will only have a chance of becom­ing law in the next Con­gress if vot­ers elect Demo­c­ra­t­ic majorities.

As most Cas­ca­dia Advo­cate read­ers like­ly know, there aren’t enough Demo­c­ra­t­ic votes in the Sen­ate now to reform the fil­i­buster. That changes if Mur­ray, Cortez Mas­to, Has­san, Kel­ly, Warnock, and oth­er Demo­c­ra­t­ic sen­a­tors win reelec­tion and add two new first ter­m­ers to their cau­cus, like John Fet­ter­man in Penn­syl­va­nia, Man­dela Barnes in Wis­con­sin, or Cheri Beasley in North Carolina.

With two addi­tion­al Demo­c­ra­t­ic sen­a­tors, Sen­ate Democ­rats would be able to with­stand Joe Manchin and Krys­ten Sine­ma’s oppo­si­tion to fil­i­buster reform.

Mean­while, to main­tain a major­i­ty in the House, Democ­rats have to mount a strong defense by reelect­ing incum­bents like Kim Schri­er. Their chances of win­ning a major­i­ty will go up if they increase their com­mit­ment to going on offense with promis­ing can­di­dates like Marie Glue­senkamp Perez in WA-03, who would undoubt­ed­ly be a vote for the Let Doc­tors Pro­vide Repro­duc­tive Health Care Act.

Adjacent posts

  • Enjoyed what you just read? Make a donation

    Thank you for read­ing The Cas­ca­dia Advo­cate, the North­west Pro­gres­sive Insti­tute’s jour­nal of world, nation­al, and local politics.

    Found­ed in March of 2004, The Cas­ca­dia Advo­cate has been help­ing peo­ple through­out the Pacif­ic North­west and beyond make sense of cur­rent events with rig­or­ous analy­sis and thought-pro­vok­ing com­men­tary for more than fif­teen years. The Cas­ca­dia Advo­cate is fund­ed by read­ers like you and trust­ed spon­sors. We don’t run ads or pub­lish con­tent in exchange for money.

    Help us keep The Cas­ca­dia Advo­cate edi­to­ri­al­ly inde­pen­dent and freely avail­able to all by becom­ing a mem­ber of the North­west Pro­gres­sive Insti­tute today. Or make a dona­tion to sus­tain our essen­tial research and advo­ca­cy journalism.

    Your con­tri­bu­tion will allow us to con­tin­ue bring­ing you fea­tures like Last Week In Con­gress, live cov­er­age of events like Net­roots Nation or the Demo­c­ra­t­ic Nation­al Con­ven­tion, and reviews of books and doc­u­men­tary films.

    Become an NPI mem­ber Make a one-time donation

One Ping

  1. […] undoubt­ed­ly be a vote for the Let Doc­tors Pro­vide Repro­duc­tive Health Care Act.# Writ­ten by Andrew Vil­leneuve :: 8:30 AMCat­e­gories: Civ­il Lib­er­ties, Core Ency­clo­pe­dia TopicsTags: […]

  • NPI’s essential research and advocacy is sponsored by: