May 14, 2010
Gallop poll: The New Normal on Abortion - Americans More "Pro-Life"Topics: Political News and commentaries
"Pro-life" has apparently become the new normal in America. Gallop reports that the conservative shift in Americans' views on abortion that was first recorded a year ago has carried over into 2010.
Slightly more Americans call themselves "pro-life" than "pro-choice," 47% vs. 45%, according to a May 3-6 Gallup poll. This is nearly identical to the 47% to 46% division found last July following a more strongly pro-life advantage of 51% to 42% last May.
While the two-percentage-point gap in current abortion views is not significant, it represents the third consecutive time Gallup has found more Americans taking the pro-life than pro-choice position on this measure since May 2009, suggesting a real change in public opinion. By contrast, in nearly all readings on this question since 1995, and each survey from 2003 to 2008, more Americans called themselves pro-choice than pro-life.And surely to no one's surprise, Gallop found the shift to be limited to Republicans and Independents:
According to two-year averages of these results since 2001, Republicans have become more likely to call themselves pro-life since polling conducted in 2003/2004, as have Republican-leaning independents since 2005/2006. Independents who lean to neither party also became more likely to call themselves "pro-life" between 2003/2004 and 2005/2006, but have since held steady.Gallop's report shows other measures are also highly relevant to the abortion issue - age and gender. Over the last ten years, every age group has seen and increase inidentification with pro-life. The percentage of seniors identifying as pro-life has gone up seven points; young adults ages 18-29 has gone up in pro-life identification four points; those in the 50-64 age group have increased in pro-life identification by five points; and those in their 30s have increased in their pro-life identification by two points in ten years.
Democrats' self-identification with the pro-life position has moved in the other direction, declining from 37% in 2003/2004 to 31% in 2009/2010. Among independents who lean Democratic, there has been no movement in either direction.
And as Ed Morrissey points out, women may provide the most surprising demographic of all, however.
In the past ten years, there has been a six-point gain among women identifying as pro-life. Men have increased only by three points in the same period, and now only are a single percentage point higher in pro-life identification. At 49% and 48%, both are coming close to establishing themselves as majorities instead of pluralities.Ed also suggests that Gallup may be working the analysis in the wrong direction - we may be looking at a cultural shift rather than a political shift:
We are looking at a cultural shift on abortion, where its perceived morality (consistently rejected by majorities over the same period of time) has finally come into closer relationship with personal identification on the issue. It's not the political divide that's driving these numbers -- but it may be that the cultural shift has started to impact political identification as well. If so, pro-choice Democrats could find themselves in a minority party in the next several years.Regardless of how one frames it - be it political or cultural, what is clear is that the evidence points to Americans growing more wary about the morality of abortion per se - and it's about time they're finally waking up to the big lie of the Left - that unborn children are nothing more than a lump of tissue.
Posted by Richard at May 14, 2010 10:57 AM
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