Here's how we're applying labels to candidates and legislators based on the statements they've made, and the actions they've taken to protect or limit abortion rights.
They have led efforts to protect and expand abortion rights and reproductive healthcare. They may have co-sponsored legislation or been actively involved in organizations doing work in this area.
They are a consistent supporter of efforts to protect abortion rights and expand access to reproductive healthcare. They've either voted consistently with these goals, or made clear statements about their intention to do so if elected.
They believe that, in most cases, the right to an abortion exists. They are aiming to codify the rights that were granted under Roe v. Wade, but have signaled that their support on these issues may be limited.
They are either been inconsistent in their actions, silent, or both. More investigation is needed. If they are a Democratic candidate in the 2022 election, they have been uncharacteristically silent.*
They think everything is fine right now. They do not think that abortion rights need to be codified, but have also clearly stated that they will not support limiting access further.
They have consistently voted for bills that would limit access to abortion. As a candidate, they have referred to themselves as "Pro-Life" or signaled they would vote for bills that would limit abortion access.
They have led efforts to limit abortion rights. They may also have expressed especially extreme beliefs, such as supporting total bans starting at 6 weeks or earlier, or allowing for common exceptions.
*Why bring Party into it?
We don't believe abortion rights should be a party issue, but unfortunately votes on these issues commonly fall along party lines. We've seen the majority of Republicans vote to limit abortion rights, and the majority (but not all!) Democrats vote to protect them.
In cases where a candidate has no voting record, and we haven't found a public statement on the subject, we can use party affiliation to take a best guess. Plus, we have to assume that if the candidate is silent on such a pressing issue, they're comfortable with us making such an assumption.