57 percent in new poll say a woman should be able to get abortion for any reason

Associated Press-Damian Dovarganes
Abortion-rights supporters attend the “Bans Off Our Bodies Abortion Rally” at Los Angeles City Hall, Saturday, May 14, 2022. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

More than half of Americans believe a woman should be able to get an abortion for any reason, according to a new Wall Street Journal poll. 

The Journal noted that the 41 percent of respondents who oppose women being legally able to get an abortion was the lowest on record.

The new poll, published Thursday, found that 57 percent of respondents said that women should be allowed to obtain a legal abortion if she wants to.

The poll comes amid the fierce backlash to Politico publishing a draft opinion last month that signaled the majority of Supreme Court justices favor overturning the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision.

Sixty-eight percent of those surveyed said that they do not want to see Roe v. Wade overturned, effectively ending the federal right to abortion, while 30 percent of respondents said they do support the move. 

The draft opinion would leave abortion laws largely up to states, where political battles are also brewing in anticipation of the decision. More than 20 GOP-led states have so-called “trigger laws” that would ban or severely restrict abortion if Roe v. Wade is overturned.

Many Democratic-led states have moved to further protect the right to abortion, and ensure that the procedure is available to residents of states where the procedure is banned.

The Mississippi law under consideration by the Supreme Court would ban pregnancy after 15 weeks, well before the current standard of fetal viability, which is approximately 24 weeks into pregnancy.

Asked about banning abortion after at least 15 weeks, 34 percent of respondents to the WSJ poll supported the move, while 43 percent of respondents opposed it and 21 percent were undecided.

Asked if they support a proposed ban on abortion after six weeks of pregnancy — such as in Texas’s abortion law — 30 percent were in favor, while  49 percent opposed it.

Forty-four percent of respondents said that the Supreme Court should set the nation’s abortion laws, while 20 percent of those surveyed said state legislatures and governors should be responsible and 17 percent wanted Congress should handle the matter.

Eighty-six percent of those surveyed said they support abortions if a woman is suffering from serious health issues, while 84 percent supported access to the procedure if the woman’s pregnancy was a result of rape and incest, and 76 percent supported abortions if there is a strong chance of a serious birth defect. 

The Wall Street Journal poll was conducted along with the nonpartisan research organization NORC at the University of Chicago from May 9 to 17, with a total of 1,071 respondents. The margin of error for the poll is four percentage points.

Tags abortion access abortion ban Abortion in the United States abortion rights abortion rights Supreme Court of the United States The Wall Street Journal
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