A new Rasmussen national telephone poll finds that 53 percent of American women believe that abortions are too easily obtained – well above the 42 percent of men who agree and contradicting abortion rights groups' frequent assertion that their position on the issue represents most women.
The survey of 1,000 likely voters on Aug. 11 and 12 found that nearly half of the nation’s voters of both sexes, 48 percent, continue to believe abortions are too easily obtainable in the United States. The figure dwarfed the scant 15 percent who consider abortion too difficult to get, and it was well above the 23 percent who believe the difficulty level is “about right.”
The findings belie the often-triumphalist attitude of liberal activist groups like NARAL Pro-Choice America, which in 2003 even changed its name from the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League to emphasize its contention that America was a “pro-choice country” where most citizens supported the agenda of easily obtained abortion on demand.
In fact, by international standards, the United States is on the extreme, being one of only about a half-dozen countries in the world with virtually unrestricted abortion throughout pregnancy. As a Senate Judiciary Committee report on abortion noted, “no significant legal barriers of any kind whatsoever exist today in the United States for a woman to obtain an abortion for any reason during any stage of her pregnancy.”
The poll numbers are also nothing new, according to Rasmussen Reports, being “in line with findings on this question in surveys for over four years now.” The polling firm noted that “Unchanged over the years is the belief held by 54 percent that abortion is morally wrong most of the time. Thirty-two percent disagree, and 14 percent more are undecided.”
Rasmussen’s findings also echo a Gallup survey last year indicating that, for the first time, most Americans considered themselves “pro-life” rather than “pro-choice.”
The underreported pro-life majority among women may have something to do with the recent political missteps of an overconfident abortion rights movement. In June, for example, pro-life groups and congressional Republicans successfully petitioned Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to approve a nationwide regulatory ban on coverage for most abortions in high-risk insurance pools in the new Obamacare health law, as Planned Parenthood and NARAL were caught flat-footed.
“We’re stuck in a slow backpedal,” Laura MacCleery, government relations director for the Center for Reproductive Rights, admitted in an interview with the Politico last month.
In more disturbing news for abortion rights activists, Rasmussen found pro-life voters to be “twice as likely as those who are pro-choice to say abortion as an issue is important to how they vote this fall.”
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