Abortion rights, economy expected to be top issues for Arizonans in 2024 election

Nov 8, 2023, 4:35 AM

This is the third in a five-part series called “Arizona Votes 2024: One Year Out,” which will examine the lead-up to the upcoming election in Arizona. Read part one here and part two here.

PHOENIX — Abortion rights and the economy are expected to be the two most important issues to Arizona voters heading into the 2024 election.

It’s still unclear if abortion rights will be on the ballot in Arizona next year, but a coalition of abortion rights groups are working to gather signatures.

Chief pollster Paul Bentz with HighGround Consulting expects that charge will be successful.

“If you have something like abortion on the ballot, it may bring more of those younger voters out who may not choose to participate otherwise,” Bentz said.

What effect will abortion rights have on the 2024 election in Arizona?

When the groups announced signature collection to get the initiative on the ballot, Gov. Katie Hobbs released a statement affirming her support for abortion rights.

“I’m thrilled that Arizonans are going to have the opportunity to make their voices heard next November and I’m confident they will support a constitutional right to abortion,” Hobbs said.

Mike Noble with Noble Predictive Insights agrees abortion rights will take center stage next year. He says nearly all female demographics, regardless of party affiliation, believe they are directly affected by the issue of access to abortion.

He thinks abortion rights will have an impact on the election, but questions whether it will overtake party loyalty. Noble, like Bentz, believes it will get a lot of younger Democrats to the polls.

But polling on the topic of abortion rights is relatively new. When the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in June 2022, the topic got thrust into the national spotlight and left abortion rights up to individual states.

However, Noble wonders if the topic of abortion will outweigh the issue of the economy with high inflation, interest rates, home affordability and rent prices.

What effect will the economy have on the 2024 election in Arizona?

Bentz said the economy is a topic that affects everyone. He says given the prolonged period of high gas prices and inflated grocery bills, Republicans have an opportunity to run on the issue of high prices and affordability. He says the race for president will be about who can win independent voters in Arizona.

Bentz added Arizona’s economy has fared better than other states but expects it to become a bigger issue over the next year.

What other issues will be at the forefront of Arizona voters’ minds?

As a border state, immigration will also be a driving force. Noble says that’s the third big issue for Arizona voters this cycle.

Bentz also says immigration will be a top three issue.

“It’s the number one issue for Republicans,” Bentz said. “Republicans have been on immigration for more than a decade now. It maintains a top issue. It fluctuates when we’ve had issues like the caravan or unaccompanied minors.”

He says immigration is something all the candidates bring up and it’s why they visit the border when they come to Arizona.

Noble agrees.

“Every Republican will have a border ad in the primary,” Noble said.

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Abortion rights, economy expected to be top issues for Arizonans in 2024 election