A new survey by Marist Poll reveals that majority of Americans including Democrats and pro-choice advocates support “significant restrictions on abortion, such as a ban after the first trimester.
The poll commissioned by Knights of Columbus released on Wednesday says that seventy-six percent of Americans including Democrats, Republicans, independents, and those who identify either as pro-life or pro-choice support the said restrictions. Essentially, the poll captured the reality that in spite of the remarkable divide between pro-life and pro-choice Americans, there are many points of consensus on abortion.
51 percent of the respondents said they are pro-choice, while 44 percent stated they were pro-life. Only four percent said they were “unsure” where they stand on the matter. The said divide between the two groups has remained basically constant over the ten years the KoC has been conducting its survey.
The most striking finding of the poll is that Americans actually agree on much when it comes to abortion. The poll asked about when respondents think abortion should be available: through the whole pregnancy, during the first six months, the first three months ( as in many European countries), only in the case of rape , incest, or the life of the mother (is in danger), or under no circumstance. Respondents were not given the ability to specify a particular month beyond three or six, which also suggests that the data may not capture the full range of preferences.
Seventy-six percent chose one of the last four options, which KoC defined as “significant restrictions on abortion.” Only twelve percent said they believe abortion should be available at any time, including 21 percent of both self-identified pro-choice people and self-identified Democrats.
The poll findings also reveal that 63 percent of Americans support a 20-week abortion ban.
Americans, however, are divided on the question of the morality of abortion. 56 percent consider abortion morally wrong while 41 percent find it morally acceptable. In the case of abortion of a child with a genetic disorder, the greater majority at 64 percent consider it morally wrong, while only 26 percent find it morally acceptable.
Sixty percent of Americans surveyed oppose or strongly oppose using tax dollars to fund abortions, including 43 percent of self-identified Democrats and 56 percent self-identified independents.
Fifty-four percent of Americans also believe that doctors with moral objections about abortion should not be legally required to perform abortions, including 40 percent of Democrats and 56 percent of independents.
Knights of Columbus think that the poll results are actually positive and encouraging illustrating that there can be consensus on the issue of abortion, where “things could get done that everybody would agree on.”