Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Majority of Americans Say Abortion Is Wrong

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pregnant womanA new national survey has found that a majority of Americans think that abortion is wrong. While 48 percent of 1,000 likely U.S. voters queried in the late August Rasmussen Reports phone survey said they considered themselves pro-choice, with 43 percent identifying themselves as pro-life, 55 percent said they think abortion is morally wrong most of the time. Another 30 percent said they think abortion is morally acceptable in the majority of cases, with 15 remaining undecided on the issue.

Predictably, the poll found that 70 percent of Democrats identify themselves as pro-choice, while 62 percent of Republicans and 47 percent of voters affiliated with neither party identified themselves as pro-life.

When asked about the morality of the procedure, 72 percent of Republicans and 60 percent of unaffiliated voters said they thought abortion is wrong most of the time, with 46 percent of Democrats disagreeing and saying abortion is not wrong in most instances.

“When it comes to the next congressional election,” the Rasmussen report noted, “54% of voters say the issue of abortion is at least somewhat important in terms of how they will vote, including 31% who say it’s ‘Very Important.’”

The survey also found that 41 percent of all voters think it’s too easy to get an abortion in the U.S., with only 16 percent saying they think it’s too difficult to obtain the procedure, and another 29 percent saying they think the level of accessibility is just about right. Republicans are nearly three times as likely as Democrats to say it’s too easy to get an abortion in America today.

“Some states in the country require a waiting period before a woman gets an abortion,” noted the report. “Just over half (52%) agree that there should be a waiting period, while 35% disagree. Thirteen percent are undecided.”

The Rasmussen survey found that on hot-button social issues like abortion, public prayer, and the separation of church and state, 36 percent of voters identify themselves as conservative, 29 percent as moderate, and 32 percent as liberal.

A survey from earlier in the summer conducted by the Gallup pollsters found that on some key issues, Americans who identify themselves as pro-choice are actually somewhat closely aligned with those who identify as pro-life. As reported in The New American, the Gallup survey found that self-described pro-choice and pro-life Americans agree on nine key areas of abortion policy, “including requiring informed consent for women (86 percent for pro-choice, 87 percent for pro-life respondents), and banning partial-birth abortion (63 percent for pro-choice, 68 percent for pro-life respondents).”

Additionally, found the Gallup survey, majorities of both camps thought:

• Abortion should be legal when a woman’s life is endangered (97 percent for pro-choice, 69 percent for pro-life respondents).

• Abortion should be legal when a woman’s physical health is endangered (96 percent to 68 percent).

• Abortion should be legal in cases of rape or incest (91 percent to 59 percent).

• Abortion should be banned in the third trimester (79 percent to 94 percent).

• Parental consent should be required for minors seeking abortion (60 percent to 81 percent).

• A 24-hour waiting period should be in place for women seeking abortion (60 percent to 79 percent).

“Surprisingly,” reported The New American, “the Gallup survey even found that a razor thin majority of ‘pro-choice’ Americans (52 percent) think abortion should be banned in the second trimester — compared to 90 percent of pro-lifers who hold this view.”