Poll Finds Most Women Back Abortion Restrictions

Poll Finds Most Women Back Abortion Restrictions
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Abortion may be a women’s issue, but not in the way that the media and some politicians would like us to believe. Far from seeing abortion as a sacrosanct right to be defended, the overwhelming majority of women in this country want abortion restricted, and don’t want it funded by tax dollars. A majority also think it is morally wrong and that it causes more harm than good to women in the long run.

Such a statement isn’t guesswork, or based on anecdotal evidence. It is a fact, proven by the newly released survey on abortion from The Marist Poll. As it has for past nine years, this annual poll on abortion in America, sponsored by the Knights of Columbus, again shows just how extreme and outside the mainstream that abortion advocacy, and the resistance to restrictions, really is.

If politicians really want to show that they trust American women, then they should follow the advice of the overwhelming majority of us and restrict abortion in meaningful ways.

This means supporting the president’s action to ban funding of abortion internationally, which is supported by 83 percent of women, and same percentage of all Americans.

This means limiting abortion substantially through legislation. Nationwide, 77 percent of women support limiting abortion to – at most – the first trimester. That is slightly higher than the percentage of all Americans – 74 percent. Laws restricting abortion should be embraced, not resisted.

And 61 percent of women think it is important, or an immediate priority, for our government to restrict abortion in this way, a slightly higher percentage than the 59 percent of all Americans who hold this position.

Not surprisingly, the majority of American women (59 percent) say abortion is morally wrong, the same percentage of all Americans who agree.

And a majority of women (51 percent) believe that abortion causes more harm than good in the long run; 50 percent of all Americans agree.

There’s another thing too. Though abortion advocates use the term “pro-choice” as shorthand for pro-abortion, the polling shows that many – often most – people who identify as pro-choice actually support substantial restrictions on abortion.

Those who call themselves pro-life can be counted on to support such measures in overwhelming numbers, but so can majorities, or substantial minorities, of those who identify as pro-choice.

More than half of those who call themselves pro-choice would limit abortion to – at most – the first trimester. Seven in 10 who call themselves pro-choice support the end of abortion funding abroad – the policy enacted this week by President Trump.

Support for abortion restrictions unites the vast majority of pro-lifers, as well as all Americans, American women, and Republicans. The debate over whether or not to enact restrictions isn’t really a national debate at all. It substantially splits only those who identify as pro-choice or Democrat. It is a debate internal to the pro-choice movement and members of one political party.

For most Americans – regardless of race or age – the debate is settled.

When women add their presence and their voices to the March for Life this year, they will be speaking up for the vast majority of American women. They will be saying this: “Trust us, enough is enough. It is time to get serious about restricting abortion in this country.”

Telling women that they must be pro-abortion to fit in with the modern women’s movement imposes a viewpoint entirely alien to the vast majority of us. It doesn’t reflect our beliefs, it distorts them.

It’s time for those supporting pro-abortion orthodoxy to come to terms with the fact that they don’t speak for women -- they speak in opposition to us. Women have made their choice. They have chosen to support abortion restrictions. It’s time for Washington to embrace this feminine consensus and to respect our collective decision.

As the media noted, abortion was the issue that divided the “women’s marches” last week. But as the polling shows, abortion is an issue that actually unites the vast majority of American women – and most Americans – who overwhelming seek greater restrictions.

Jeanne Mancini is the president of the March for Life.

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