Reproductive Rights Prof Blog

Editor: Caitlin E. Borgmann
CUNY School of Law

A Member of the Law Professor Blogs Network

Thursday, March 27, 2014

National Survey Shows Women Object to Religious Exemptions

Planned Parenthood: Women Voters' Reaction to Religious Exemptions, by Hart Research Associates:

Overview of Key Findings:

Our new national survey of 1,004 women voters between the ages of 18 and 55 shows that a large majority strongly object to the religious exemptions for corporations that are being sought in the Hobby Lobby case.

    • Women voters consistently and overwhelmingly disagree with the idea that corporations should be able to exempt themselves from observing laws because those laws violate their religious beliefs.
    • Women age 55 and younger specifically reject corporations’ claims that they should be exempted from covering prescription birth control in their health plans because of religious objections to contraception. 
    • Democrats and independents reject these claims overwhelmingly, while Republicans are divided evenly.
These findings—underscoring strong objections to religious exemptions for corporations—are consistent with other public polls on the topic that show that more than half of all voters oppose allowing employers to opt out of covering prescription birth control in their health plans as required under the Affordable Care Act. . . .

March 27, 2014 in Contraception, Public Opinion, Religion, Religion and Reproductive Rights | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Faundes et al. on Brazilians' Views on Abortion Legality

Anibel Faundes, et al., have posted Brazilians Have Different Views on When Abortion Should Be Legal, But Most Do Not Agree with Imprisoning Women for Abortion on SSRN.  Here is the abstract:

Unsafe abortions remain a major public health problem in countries with very restrictive abortion laws. In Brazil, parliamentarians − who have the power to change the law − are influenced by “public opinion”, often obtained through surveys and opinion polls. This paper presents the findings from two studies. One was carried out in February–December 2010 among 1,660 public servants and the other in February–July 2011 with 874 medical students from three medical schools, both in São Paulo State, Brazil. Both groups of respondents were asked two sets of questions to obtain their opinion about abortion: 1) under which circumstances abortion should be permitted by law, and 2) whether or not women in general and women they knew who had had an abortion should be punished with prison, as Brazilian law mandates. The differences in their answers were enormous: the majority of respondents were against putting women who have had abortions in prison. Almost 60% of civil servants and 25% of medical students knew at least one woman who had had an illegal abortion; 85% of medical students and 83% of civil servants thought this person(s) should not be jailed. Brazilian parliamentarians who are currently reviewing a reform in the Penal Code need to have this information urgently. . . .

February 26, 2014 in Abortion Bans, International, Public Opinion, Scholarship and Research | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Poll Shows West Virginians Oppose More Abortion Regulations

West Virginia Gazette-Mail: Poll: Plurality of W.Va. voters oppose more abortion regulations, by Lori Kersey:

A new poll commissioned by an abortion rights agency suggests that West Virginians do not support more regulations that some say are meant to close abortion clinics.

Planned Parenthood sponsored the poll, which found that 49 percent of voters in West Virginia oppose adding more restrictions to the state's abortion clinics. Twenty-eight percent of people support more restrictions and 23 percent are not sure, according to the poll. . . .

November 24, 2013 in Public Opinion, State and Local News, Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers (TRAP) | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Female Voters Made the Difference in Defeat of Albuquerque 20-Week Abortion Ban

MSNBC: Female voters defeated Albuquerque abortion ban, by Irin Carmon:

Earlier this week, voters in Albuquerque voted down a city-wide measure that would have banned abortion after 20 weeks, by a ten-point margin. According to voter data analyzed by ProgressNowNM, the pro-choice side has women to thank for it. . . .

November 23, 2013 in Abortion Bans, Anti-Choice Movement, Public Opinion, State and Local News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Pew Poll Compares Public's Views on Morality of Abortion vs. Other Embryo-Destroying Procedures

Pew Research - Religion & Public Life Project: Abortion Viewed in Moral Terms: Fewer See Stem Cell Research and IVF as Moral Issues:

Regardless of their views about the legality of abortion, most Americans think that having an abortion is a moral issue. By contrast, the public is much less likely to see other issues involving human embryos – such as stem cell research or in vitro fertilization – as a matter of morality. . . .

___________________________________

Lifenews seems somewhat puzzled by the discrepancy:

A new Pew research poll finds Americans say abortion is morally wrong by a 3-1 margin. However, Americas are still divided on the issue of embryonic stem cell research — even though it destroys human life and still has not helped any patients. . . .

But perhaps anti-choice groups themselves are partly to blame:

The Atlantic Wire: Americans See Abortion, But Not Stem Cell Research, as a Moral Issue, by Abby Ohl Heiser:

. . . While the issue is currently framed in "momentum" language familiar to any election horse race aficionado, our views on its legalization overall have stayed pretty steady since Roe v. Wade. . . . So what's momentum got to do with it?

For starters, the far-right legislative push to pass a series of abortion-restricting laws is bringing a cornucopia of moral associations with it, ones that resonate with conservative-leaning politics. . . .

________________________________________

For scholarly analysis of this issue, see my articles The Meaning of 'Life': Belief and Reason in the Abortion Debate and Roe v. Wade's 40th Anniversary: A Moment of Truth for the Anti-Abortion-Rights Movement?

-CEB

August 17, 2013 in Abortion, Bioethics, Public Opinion, Stem Cell Research | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, August 12, 2013

Vast Majority of Students in Ireland Think Abortion Should Be Legal

Irish flag
The Irish Examiner: 83% of students believe abortion should be allowed in Ireland:

Only one-third of Irish students say that they believe in God, with 83.5% saying abortion should be allowed in Ireland.

The research, conducted in the past two weeks by the Student Marketing Network, also found that 66% of those surveyed don’t believe that religion makes the world a better place. 

The survey of 1,146 students showed that 57.8% of respondents considered themselves Catholic, another 20% Atheist. . . .

August 12, 2013 in Abortion Bans, International, Public Opinion, Religion and Reproductive Rights | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

New State Restrictions Reflect Sharp Regional Differences on Abortion

NPR News: Survey Shows Regional Divide On Abortion:

Trancript available here.

NPR - It's All Politics blog: Abortion Drives Bigger Wedge Between Red And Blue States, by Frank James:

Regional disparities over the abortion issue have grown during the past two decades, leading to an ever widening gulf between the nation's most conservative and most liberal regions.

A new Pew Research Center survey reports that an eight-state region — Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, Texas and Oklahoma — has grown significantly more conservative when it comes to abortion, with opposition to legal abortion increasing by 12 percentage points since 1995-96. That's the biggest jump of any region in the nation over that period. . . .

The Washington Post - The Fix blog: When it comes to abortion restrictions, geography matters, by Scott Clement & Julia Eilperin:

As the push to impose new abortion restrictions gains momentum across the country, it’s worth keeping this key fact in mind: geography matters.

Both polling and moves by legislatures across the country have made it clear that sharp regional differences, as well as partisan ones, help determine which states are rewriting their abortion laws and which ones aren’t. . . .

July 31, 2013 in Abortion, Public Opinion, State Legislatures | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, May 6, 2013

Large Majority of Women Favor Over-the-Counter Birth Control Pill

Reuters (Health):  Most women back over-the-counter birth control pill, by Genevra Pittman:

Close to two-thirds of women favor making contraceptive pills available over the counter, according to a new nationally-representative survey.

In addition, about 30 percent of women using either no birth control or a less effective method - such as condoms - said they would likely take the Pill if it was sold without a prescription, researchers found. . . . 

May 6, 2013 in Contraception, Public Opinion, Reproductive Health & Safety, Scholarship and Research, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, April 12, 2013

Why Is Trend on Abortion Regulation Counter to That of Gay Rights and Marijuana Use?

The Washington Post - The Fix blog: If gay marriage and pot are now OK, why isn’t abortion?, by Juliet Eilperin & Scott Clement:

As abortion opponents are scoring a string of victories in the states, it raises a question: why are conservatives gaining ground in this one arena, even if they’re losing in the battle over gay marriage and marijuana?

A few factors help explain this contradiction. . . .

April 12, 2013 in Abortion, Current Affairs, Public Opinion | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Opposition to Abortion and Marriage Equality No Longer Go Hand in Hand

The Washington Post - WonkBlog:  States are cracking down on abortion—and legalizing gay marriage. What gives?, by Sarah Kliff:

Tuesday marked for a watershed day for gay rights activists as the Supreme Court heard oral arguments on a case with the potential to legalize same-sex marriage across the country.

Across the country and 1,500 miles west of Washington, an equally notable event took place: North Dakota enacted the country’s most restrictive abortion law, barring all procedures after six weeks.

For decades, support (or opposition) for gay marriage and abortion went hand in hand. They were the line-in-the-sand “values” issues that sharply divided the political parties.

Not anymore. . . .

March 26, 2013 in Abortion, Public Opinion, Sexuality | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, February 11, 2013

Anti-Abortion Sentiment Declines in Britain

British flagThe Guardian: Anti-abortion feelings declining – poll, by Ben Quinn:

Survey finds that percentage of population wanting ban on abortion has fallen from 12% in 2005 to 7% today

Anti-abortion sentiment in Britain is declining, according to a YouGov poll which also found that support for keeping or even relaxing the current 24-week limit on terminations is on the rise. . . .

February 11, 2013 in Abortion, International, Public Opinion | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Should the Abortion Rights Movement Drop the "Pro-Choice" Label?

The Atlantic: The End of Pro-Choice: Will 'No Labels' Really Help the Abortion Debate, by Lily Rothman:

If someone told you that the director of the Washington office of Planned Parenthood had said that politicians should vote to keep abortion safe and legal, the news would not be particularly surprising. But if you heard that the same woman had referred to that brand of lawmaking as "pro-abortion," the shock factor might change. The phrase "pro-abortion" is taboo. But, in March 1975, when that Planned Parenthood higher-up, Jeannie I. Rosoff, spoke to the Wall Street Journal, her wording would not have seemed so odd—the alternative to "pro-abortion" was not in common usage yet. In fact, elsewhere that WSJ article, an edition of Alan L. Otten's "Politics & People" column, was the very first print appearance of the phrase "pro-choice". . . .

January 24, 2013 in Abortion, Public Opinion | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Roe v. Wade 40th Anniversary Round-Up

Adapted from Feministing:  Daily Feminist Cheat Sheet:  40 years of "Roe v. Wade" Edition, by Alexandra Zbrodsky (more links provided at Feministing):

 

Center for Reproductive Rights (video): Happy 40th anniversary, Roe!

Another poll shows seven out of ten Americans oppose overturning Roe.

The Economist: Abortion law: Roe turns 40

Ezekiel Reis Burgin on why abortion rights are critical to him as a trans man.

Jill Filipovic on the broader implications of Roe.

Naomi Cahn and June Carbone ask: Did the pro-life movement lead to more single moms? 

Let's not forget about those who risk their lives for women's autonomy.

The Nation reprints a 1973 editorial about Roe.

A New York Times op-ed reminds us of the lengths to which women will go to end untenable pregnancies.

January 24, 2013 in Abortion, Abortion Bans, Public Opinion, Supreme Court | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, January 18, 2013

Maya Manian on Personhood Legislation

Maya Manian (University of San Francisco School of Law) has posted Personhood Legislation, Abortion Regulation, and Side Effects on Women's Health on SSRN. Here is the abstract: Image1

State personhood laws pose a puzzle. These laws would establish fertilized eggs as persons and, by doing so, would ban all abortions. Many states have consistently supported laws restricting abortion care. Yet, thus far no personhood laws have passed. Why? This Article offers a possible explanation. I suggest that voters’ recognition of the implications of personhood legislation for health issues other than abortion has led to personhood’s defeat. In other words, opponents of personhood proposals appear to have successfully reconnected abortion to pregnancy care, contraception, fertility, and women’s health in general. Public concern over the “side effects” of personhood laws seems to have persuaded even those opposed to abortion to reject personhood legislation. If this is so, personhood opponents may have struck on a strategy that could apply more broadly. As this Article explains, various anti-abortion regulations — not just personhood laws — have deleterious “side effects” on women’s health. Focusing the public’s attention on these spillover effects could create stronger support for access to abortion care and thereby better promote women’s health across the full spectrum of women’s healthcare needs.

January 18, 2013 in Abortion, Abortion Bans, Contraception, Fetal Rights, Public Opinion, Scholarship and Research | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Roe at 40: Still Controversial, Or Not That Important?

It depends on whom you ask:

The New Yorker: Political Scene: Abortion Rights Forty Years After Roe v. Wade (podcast featuring Jeffrey Toobin):

Forty years after the Supreme Court’s decision in Roe v. Wade—the anniversary is on January 22nd—the debate over the case, and abortion, hasn’t cooled off. If anything, it has only become more controversial. . . .

Slate: Most Americans No Longer Think the Abortion Debate is All That Important, by Abby Ohlheiser:

Here's the main takeaway from a new Pew study on abortion: Most Americans have more important things to care about than the abortion debate. That being said, a majority are against overturning Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court's landmark decision that turns 40 this month. . . .

The Washington Post: 40 years after Roe v. Wade, abortion foes are winning -- and losing, by David Gibson:

Four decades after Roe v. Wade, the landmark Supreme Court ruling that legalized abortion, many opponents of the decision are in a celebratory mood while those backing abortion rights are glum, feeling that momentum is turning decisively against them.

Yet in reality, little has changed in the fiercest and most protracted battle of the nation’s bitter culture war. . . .

 

January 17, 2013 in Abortion, Abortion Bans, Anti-Choice Movement, In the Media, Public Opinion, Supreme Court | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Majority of Americans Oppose Overturning Roe v. Wade

Reuters: As "Roe v. Wade" turns 40, most oppose reversing abortion ruling, by Mary Wisniewski:

Most Americans remain opposed to overturning the controversial Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade, which 40 years ago legalized abortion at least in the first three months of pregnancy, according to a poll released Wednesday.

The poll by the Pew Research Center found that 63 percent of Americans believe that Roe v. Wade should not be completely overturned, compared to 29 percent who believe it should be. . . .

__________________________

The Pew report is available here.

January 17, 2013 in Abortion, Public Opinion, Supreme Court | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Vast Majority of Irish Support Abortion Law Reform

Irish Central: Over 85 percent of Irish people support limited abortion, by Patrick Counihan:

The vast majority of Irish people support a change to abortion legislation in the wake of the death of Indian mum-to-be Savita Halappanavar.

A new opinion poll for the Sunday Business Post newspaper shows that eight out every 10 people support legislation based on the 20-year-old X Case ruling on abortion by the Supreme Court. . . .

December 2, 2012 in Abortion Bans, International, Public Opinion | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Virginia State GOP Leaders Poised To Drop Fetal Personhood Effort

The Examiner: Virginia Republicans to let 'personhood' bill die this week, by Steve Contorno:

A late effort to bring new life to a bill which would grant a fetus the same rights as an everyday citizen has likely failed, an early sign that Virginia Republicans may be less inclined to press forward on controversial social issues that overshadowed this year's session when they return to Richmond in January. . . . 

See also: 

The Huffington Post: Bob Marshall: Virginia GOP Pressures Me '7 Days A Week' To Drop Anti-Abortion Agenda, by Laura Bassett:

Virginia Del. Bob Marshall (R-Prince William), the author of the state's fetal personhood bill, says he has always been a bit of a thorn in the side of the mainstream Republican Party. But since the 2012 election, he said, the party is "more overtly gun-shy" about dealing with abortion, and the pressure from GOP leadership to back off of his socially conservative agenda is constant. . . .

November 27, 2012 in Abortion, Abortion Bans, Anti-Choice Movement, Fetal Rights, Politics, Public Opinion, State Legislatures | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Poll Shows Americans Overwhelmingly Support Access to Contraception

The Hill - Healthwatch Blog: Poll finds broad support for contraception access, by Sam Baker:

Vast majorities of Americans support access to contraception, according to a new poll commissioned by the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy.

The survey found widespread support for the thrust of President Obama's contraception mandate, which a recent Gallup poll indicated is a winning issue with female voters. American adults also overwhelmingly believe that lawmakers who oppose abortion should support contraception, according to Monday's poll. . . . 

October 23, 2012 in Contraception, Politics, President/Executive Branch, Public Opinion | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Women Favor Obama's Stance on Contraception and Abortion

Obama2The Hill - Healthwatch blog:  Poll:  Female voters give Obama edge on contraception, abortion, by Sam Baker:

President Obama's contraception mandate is helping him enormously with female voters, a new USA Today/Gallup poll says.

The survey found that Mitt Romney has made enormous gains with female voters — the candidates were tied among women who are likely to vote, and Obama had a nine-point lead among registered female voters. Concern over the economy has helped Romney erode what was once a sizable gender gap. . . .

October 17, 2012 in 2012 Presidential Campaign, Abortion, Contraception, Politics, President/Executive Branch, Public Opinion, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)