Pollsters Conclude PP Videos ‘Haven’t Moved Many People,’ But Admit Majority Hasn’t Seen Them

Margaret Knapp | August 7, 2015 | 10:48am EDT
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After the release of investigative videos of Planned Parenthood by the Center for Medical Progress (CMP), a YouGov poll concluded that “the recent video scandal has not yet caused any significant shift in popular opinion of Planned Parenthood.”

“The video seems not to have moved many people and the overall opinion of abortion is similar to what it was two years ago. Americans are almost evenly divided on whether it should be generally legal or generally illegal,” YouGov concluded.

However, the Internet-based market research firm also admitted that of the 68 percent of respondents who knew of the existence of the CMP videos, only 45 percent said they had seen any portion of them.

And YouGov pollsters did not ask the 45 percent who actually saw the videos about their current views of Planned Parenthood.

“According to our data, the limited reach of the video yielded little movement with regards to any shifts in opinion related to abortion,” Devon Jaffier, YouGov’s director of communications, told when asked why YouGov concluded that the videos had not swayed public opinion when less than half of Americans had even seen them.

YouGov’s own polling also shows a 5 percent drop in support for Planned Parenthood since last year.

Before the first video was released by CMP, a YouGov poll in March of 2014 reported that 55 percent of respondents favored Planned Parenthood, while 31 percent reported unfavorable views of the tax-subsidized organization.

However, the most recent poll taken from July 30 to August 2 shows Planned Parenthood’s favorable numbers dropping to 50 percent and its unfavorables increasing to 36 percent, with 14 percent saying they “don’t know”.

The poll also reports that a majority (52 percent) of those who have heard “at least a little” about the Planned Parenthood videos believe that they show officials from Planned Parenthood breaking the law.

However, “nearly all (80 percent) of those who have heard of the controversy and who like Planned Parenthood say it did not break the law; nearly all (85 percent) of those with unfavorable opinions of the group and knowledge of the video think it did,” according to a YouGov press release.

Of those who have heard at least a little bit about the videos, self-identified Republicans watched the videos 21 percent more than self-identified Democrats, and 14 percent more than self-identified Independents. 

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