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Question of the day

Monday, Jan 30, 2006 - Posted by Rich Miller

The latest New York Times poll (scroll down for the pdf file) shows that just 20 percent of Americans believe that abortion “should not be permitted.”

38 percent said “Abortion should be generally available to those who want it,” and 39 percent said “Abortion should be available but under stricter limits than it is now.”

The numbers have been essentially unchanged for the past 15 years (page 28 of the poll).

The question is should candidates who advocate for a ban on abortion be considered “out of the mainstream”?


  1. - Larry Horse - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 3:06 am:

    Do people who oppose abortion except in cases of rape, incest, and the life of the mother fall under “should not be permitted” or “stricter limits?”

    Those who do not favor those exceptions (or just the life exception) are clearly way out of the mainstream. Those who favor only those restrictions are slightly out of the mainstream if they do not also make some health exceptions.

    The mainstream I’d say supports first-trimester abortion rights and only afterwards if the mother faces severe threats to her health or life.

  2. - Larry Horse - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 3:10 am:

    Maybe the word severe in the above post wasn’t the best choice. Alas.

    That being said, I’ve never been a fan of the “incest” part of saying that you favor abortion for the cases of rape, incest, and the life of the mother. The reason for that is because that it kind of creates a perverse incentive for committing incest because it would be the only kind of consentual unprotected sex you could have and then also legally get an abortion (other than a life threatening case of course).

  3. - Anon - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 5:14 am:

    “Available” does not mean there should not be restrictions. “Available but stricter” Depends on what state your in restrictions are greater in some states then others. What the poll does show is that a clear majority of americans beleive abortion should severly restricted. Someone should tell the media.

  4. - genxpundit - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 6:24 am:

    Personally, I want to see more restrictions on abortion (for rape, incest, health of mother), but I don’t want to see anything happen until tougher child support laws are put into action. Otherwise you’re going to see a lot more impoverished mothers and children, and there’s no justice in that.

  5. - Absolutely not - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 6:33 am:

    Were candidates who advocated seatbelt laws out of the mainstream when they pushed for (at the time) relatively unpopular policies?

  6. - Defensor Pacis - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 6:48 am:

    As a political scientist, I am well aware that subtle changes in question make a dramatic difference on polling results.

    Anon 5:14 is absolutely correct: the numbers supporting an absolute ban are much lower than the numbers of people supporting a ban on most forms of “normal” abortion–even (gasp) among Democrats.

    The percentage of people supporting an absolute ban is not higher for two reasons:
    1) Even pro-lifers have a hard time banning abortion when the mother’s life is at risk, and
    2) The issue bundling in today’s political environment puts pro-lifers at a disadvantage when it comes to identifying better ways than abortion of advancing women’s rights.

    For my money, this is a complex issue that needs to be tackled at the state–not the federal–level.

    Is that out of the mainstream, or just sensible governance?

  7. - Bill Baar - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 7:20 am:

    The Economist had a great article on how overturning Roe V Wade benefits Democrats based on the statistics you’ve cited.

    I don’t know about who’s mainstream or not, but I think everyone should prepare for the debate because we’re not going to be able to hide behind judges and courts.

    And I think that’s how it should be.

  8. - 6 Degrees of Separation - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 7:24 am:

    One thing is for sure, no matter which way you spin this poll.

    Candidates who are for a total ban on abortion (even with a “life of the mother” exception), and those who are for taxpayer-funded abortions on demand, are out of the mainstream.

    America wants access to abortion, but with many hoops to go through to get one.

  9. - Anon - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 7:45 am:

    The meandering responses so far to a simple yes or no question show how much spin goes into this issue.

    Answer: Yes

  10. - Anon - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 7:58 am:

    Burn prolifers at the stake. Exclude this anti-choice zealots from anything in political life.

  11. - Ronnie - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 8:19 am:

    Answer: No

  12. - grand old partisan - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 9:21 am:

    I agree with Anon 7:45, but I’d add that this poll also shows that candidates who advocate that “abortion should be generally available to those who want it” (aka “abortion on demand,” or the platform of the Democratic Party) are also “out of the mainstream” (that means you, Sens. Schumer and Durbin). The poll does not specify that measures might be supported by the 59% mainstream [when you add the 39% that want “stricter limits” with the 20% who think it “should not be permitted” at all (and would naturally support any measures imposing stricter limits)], but one can imagine they might include things like parental notification. You have to ask yourself which party is at least closest to the “mainstream”? Is it the one who supports those measures, or the party that opposes them?

    This is why I also have to restrain myself from throwing things at the TV when Kennedy, Durbin and Schumer are mouthing off about how “out of the mainstream” Bush’s judicial nominees are, despite the fact that they advocate a position on abortion opposed by 60% of the American people.

  13. - HoosierDaddy - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 9:26 am:

    Yo, 6, I think you’ve torpedoed your own argument with your parenthetical. (Including a life of the mother exception makes it less than a total ban, ergo, legal, but with restrictions).

  14. - So-Called :Austin Mayor" - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 9:54 am:

    should candidates who advocate for a ban on abortion be considered “out of the mainstream”?

    Regardless of the merit of their position, they are, by definition, out of the mainstream.

  15. - Shelbyville - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 9:54 am:

    I wish they would only poll those women that have had abortions. Two of my dear friends had abortions (I accompanied one) in the mid 70s and they have regretted it for 30 years.

    What is done is done. One never had other children. The other one had one son.

    It easy to say what someone else has the right to do, but if some of these women could go back - and if abortion had not been so available, they would have made other choices.

  16. - Bill Baar - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 10:03 am:

    Don’t underestimate being out of the mainstream.

    Chicagoans reversed the flow of the Chicago river.

    It can be done.

    This is an issue where I know many people who I took for granted as favoring an absolute right to abortion at almost any point, have become far more restrictive then I thought they would be…

    ..personal observation but I notice it over and over.

  17. - Randall Sherman - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 10:09 am:

    The opponents of abortion should try to understand that many of us here in Illinois in general and in Chicago in particular are a little touchy regarding anything that sounds like an attempt to legislate morality. I’m reminded of that every time I go past the grassy area just south of the senior citzens building on the 2100 block of North Clark Street here in Chicago.

    Why? Well of course the grassy area wasn’t always there. Once upon a time that grassy section was the site of a garage… Bugs Moran’s garage! That’s right, I’m talking about the site of the infamous St. Valentine’s Day Massacre, the ultimate failure of a previous attempt to legislate morality in this nation (Prohibition).

    For two-thirds of a century, Chicago was linked to gangsters because of that failed “Noble Experiment,” and the rest of the world might still be saying, “Oh Chicago… Al Capone… rat-a-tat-tat” had the Protland Trailblazers not been so stupid in the 1984 NBA draft as to select Sam “Break-a-leg” Bowie instead of that Michael Jordan kid.

    So while I respect the strength of their religious feelings (even though I may not agree with them), I would hope that the anti-abortion forces would realize why their issue is a bit touchier here in Chicago than in other parts of the country.

  18. - the $0.02 Answer - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 10:25 am:

    My take on this is simple, people want there to be the option of an abortion, however, to use abortion as a pure birth control option is NOT the belief most americans can live with. Rape, incest, life/health of the mother is widely seen as the “line” for pro-life and pro-choice factions. The extremes, (pro-life, end of story, or abortion-on-demand, anytime, anywhere)refuse to see what the majority feel… abortion is wrong just “because” … and that abortion is needed for the health of the woman, be it mental or physical …just my $0.02 cents

  19. - grand old partisan - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 10:33 am:

    So-Called Mayor, you are absolutely right.

    I’d hate to keep beating a dead horse, but….

    All due respect to Rich, I think this question is a little unfair. The answer is an obvious “yes,” but that certainly doesn’t meant that the opponents of candidates who advocate for that position are thus in the mainstream.

    The bottom line is that neither the pro-life position of the “religious right” nor the pro-choice position of the “woman’s movement” are in the mainstream. The mainstream wants neither abortion on demand nor a general criminalization of the procedure. The mainstream wants fair and common sense measures like spousal notification and parental consent (supported by 64% and 69%, respectively, in a CNN/Gallup poll from Nov. 2005). Where do Democratic senators who oppose those measures because of pressure from Personal PAC get off talking about how “out of the mainstream” Republicans are for question whether Roe v Wade really creates a constitutional right to unrestricted abortion on demand?

  20. - triplemstrategies - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 10:40 am:

    Ask fuzzy questions. Get fuzzy answers.

    Your defining mainstream based on a poll.

    I understand your intent Rich I just know that those who identify themselves as pro-choice has dropped from 65% to 55% in the last ten years. What is in a label? Not much. What is mainstream. Who knows? I know I consider myself pro-life but there are many of those that feel I’m to “moderate” on the issue.

    The wheat from the shaft on this issue comes when you get into the details and a poll that says “Abortion should be generally available to those who want it,” is not very detailed.

    To answer you question. Those people who advocate a ban on abortion are those who feel that Roe is bad constitutional law whereby overturning Roe would allow States to set the policy. The voters get to decide who is elected to decide that State’s policy on abortion. If candidates run who advocate a complete ban on abortion are not elected then they are out of the mainstream. But with the religious underpinnings of the debate. Most candidates who hold that position don’t care if they are out of the mainstream. It’s called conviction. A sometimes refreashing thing in politics.

  21. - charlie johnston - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 10:48 am:

    To put it brutally, in 1830 anyone who believed slavery should be entirely abolished by law was out of the mainstream. In 1942 Germany anyone who believed Jews were not bloodsucking vermin who should be utterly wiped from the face of the earth was out of the mainstream.In 1950 anyone who opposed Jim Crow laws was out of the mainstream.

    Screw the mainstream. In questions of shared humanity the only relevant question is whether the entity to be arbitrarily deprived of justice is human. If the answer is yes, we have a duty to defend them regardless of what the mainstream thinks.

    Thank God we have had dedicated people in every age who eschewed the mainstream and worked to defend the defenseless and change the mainstream. The day will come - and sooner than many of you think - when people studying their geneology will be more ashamed to come upon an employee of Planned Parenthood in their family tree than to come upon a slave trader. And on that day, someone will add, in dazed horror, to my first paragraph that ‘in the early years of the 2000’s, those who opposed allowing people to brutally and painfully execute their own unborn infants were out of the mainstream.’

  22. - Anon - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 11:34 am:

    Charlie Johnson: WELL PUT!

  23. - VanillaMan - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 11:36 am:

    Why is an anti-abortion view considered religious? Or extreme? Or right-wing?

    It is common sense, and it is a proven biological and scientific fact: When a woman is pregnant she will have a baby. We wouldn’t be here today if we did not have an instinct to protect our offspring.

    Since when is doing the natural thing suddenly not mainstream?

    We have a history of having societal standards that do not mesh with nature and biology. Eventually, biology wins out. We all know, and always knew, that slavery was wrong, but societal standards overruled this. We all know, and always knew, that inter-racial love and marriage was natural, but societal standards made it a crime. We all know, and always knew, that women should have the same rights as men, but societal standards prevented this.

    Now we have a new societal standard corrupting nature. Over the past 30 years, a new anti-science belief is being foisted on us that says that we should stop believing that women are pregnant with new life and that we should stop our instinctive need to protect that life.

    Future generations are going to look at our willingness to pretend that abortion is just a woman’s right, or a right to privacy, or another form of birth control and justifiably see us as the selfish barbarians we were. Just like slave owners, misogynists, and other historic kooks.

    Abortion should be safe, legal and used to save the woman’s life. It is to birth control what nuclear power is to boiling water. An extreme that destroys.

  24. - Larry Horse - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 11:52 am:

    My stance on abortion is kind of parallel to the Catholic Church’s stance on the death penalty. That is, there may have been situations in the past when it was necessary, but that in the modern world where we have the ability to securely imprison criminals for life, killing them is sinful and immoral. Likewise, with the amazing array of birth control techniques available today, I don’t really see abortion as a necessary part of giving women reproductive equality with men. Since men and women can use birth control from condoms to the pill to emergency contraception, I really don’t see why abortion should be necessary other than in cases of rape or where the mother faces a risk to her life or long-term health. That being said, I also believe that the government should make birth control from condoms to Emergency contraception free and easily available so that abortion is no longer necessary and so that consenting people having sex doesn’t result in an innocent unborn life being terminated.

  25. - insider - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 12:22 pm:


  26. - Bubs - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 12:32 pm:

    Charlie, not to get too technical about it, but I am struck by the fact that your examples from history all involve changes to new paradigms involving a widening of personal freedom (slaves are free, Jews are allowed to live free of fear, blacks get expanded civil rights). In the abortion debate, however, you are advocate a return to the past, and a reduction of personal liberty.

    You will no doubt respond that you are widening the rights of the fetus, but I would point out that balancing the competing constitutional rights of the mother and the state (as advocate for the life of the fetus) is exactly what the Roe v. Wade court tried to do, however unsuccessfully.

    The reversal of Roe and its progeny requires the Supreme Court to reject a “fundamental due process right,” some 30-35 years after they “found” it. Has the Court ever done that before? I do not believe so, and I predict that, even with Roberts and Alito, the Court will not “reverse” Roe so much as gut it on time periods, as medical science has slowly pushed forward (since 1973, anyway) the beginning of a fetus’ “viability” outside of the mother, the point at which the Court recognizes a state’s right to completely ban abortion.

    You won’t like to hear this, but I suspect that future generations will indeed make reference to backward thinking in the “early years of the 2000s,” as you say. In pattern with your examples from history, in which rights were expanded, it will refer to those who opposed gay rights.

  27. - HoosierDaddy - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 1:09 pm:


    Saying that outlawing or severely restricting abortion will not lead to greater human freedom is to deny the humanity of the unborn child. You just made Charlie’s point. The Nazis denied the humanity of the Jews, and the pro-slavery Confederates denied the humanity of the African race. Those who support “legal” abortion must by definition deny the humanity of the unborn human.

  28. - anon - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 1:12 pm:


    That’s kind of the point.

    The operative word being “unborn.”

  29. - charlie johnston - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 1:34 pm:

    Bubs, I will write a post on this tomorrow. You do not understand the philosophical underpinnings of the concept of rights, nor constitutional law, nor the history of constitutional law.

    Just a quick bit on a case where the Supreme Court reversed itself on an expansion of rights…in upholding the fugitive slave act, which expanded the property rights of slaveowners to recover their ‘property’ even when it had migrated to a free state. That was, of course, later invalidated - and we are rightly ashamed of that particular expansion of ‘rights.’

  30. - Bubs - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 1:39 pm:

    Hoosier Daddy,

    I am skeptical of using a phrase so vague and broad as “denying humanity.” For example, the slave owners knew the slaves were human, the Nazis knew the Jews were human, and the segregationists knew blacks were human. It does not get one very far.

    It appears that your phrasing of “humanity” is a euphemism for “human rights”. That, however, leads us right back the tough questions faced by the Supreme Court in Roe. They could not hide behind generalities. The case was before them, the Constitution (which supported both sides) was in their hands, and they had to make the call.

  31. - Bubs - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 1:45 pm:

    “You do not understand the philosophical underpinnings of the concept of rights, nor constitutional law, nor the history of constitutional law.”

    It’s OK, Charlie, we’ll all hear you out tomorrow. You really didn’t need the insult, nor did I.

  32. - HoosierDaddy - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 2:27 pm:


    You are correct that my terminology was a bit fuzzy, but our Constitution is also quite “fuzzy.”

    Whether the Nazis knew the Jews were human or not, their rhetoric speaks otherwise. A reading of some of Himmeler’s or Goebbels’ crap demonstrates the impression they were trying to create of Jews. Similarly with blacks being treated as property by slavers and the U.S. Supreme Court in Dredd Scott.

    (Now, let me insert here that it is NOT my attempt to equate you to a Nazi).

    I concur that the Roe Court did attempt to address the question in terms of specifics. I do not think, though, that sufficient attention was given to the rights of the unborn. That, however, simply begs the question: “at what point does one acquire human rights?”

    Perhaps it is time to revisit the issue at the federal level (Supreme Court, or Congress) with a 21st Century understanding of science.

    I am not certain that the answer sought by many people who agree with me on the underlying issue (humanity of an unborn person) is correct. Many want to take it to the states by a direct reversal of Roe. Theoretically, it could work. Or, it could create a patchwork of state laws and ardently held opinions such as existed in the 1850s with regard to slavery…

    At any rate, Bubs, we are not going to solve the issue here.

  33. - US Army Vet - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 2:31 pm:


    I would agree with all except to point out that it is *still* out of the mainstream to think that slavery should be, or in the case of the United States, should have been, entirely abolished by law. Lest the fact be overlooked, in our country it was abolished by war with over 600,000 deaths.

    Anyone today who suggests that American slavery should have been abolished in the 1860s by law and not by a murderous and destructive war is viewed as a Southern sympathizer, racist, and worse.

    The violent overthrow of the institution of African slavery is something shared by only two countries, the United States and Haiti. All other countries abolished it by law.

  34. - Punley Dieter Finn - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 2:37 pm:

    The mainstream is a sewer just like Bill Baar’s Chicago river. When you reverse its flow, the effluvium moves in another direction as well, sometimes in a better direction than the one in which it was going. In the case of the Chicago river, by reversing the mainstream, we saved the source of our sustenance.

  35. - Papa Legba - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 2:43 pm:

    Seriously, how much does a candidates stated position really matter? No joke here. Now that the Federal Courts have ruled that “puffery” is fine and dandy, a candidate can say anything they wish and whatever will play well at the time. Nothing new on the campaign trail though, it is just that it has now been validated that you can lie through your teeth when campaigning. And its… Okay.

  36. - charlie johnston - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 3:22 pm:

    Hey, Bubs, sorry to have phrased that in the manner of an insult. My intent was to say that your definition of rights is flawed and interpretation of constitutional history missing some things that I would respond to tomorrow…it came out pejoratively and I am sorry for that. When tapping out something quickly, I occasionally get offensive when I mean to be forceful. While I disagree with your reasoning, your comment was written in a respectful and positive way. My response to you was not. Forgive me and I’ll try to make up for it tomorrow.

  37. - the wonderboy - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 3:30 pm:


    While I consider myself pro-life, I cannot help but think that your views are a little over the top. You essentially stated that planned parenthood workers are worse than slave traders…and I honestly hope that you were using hyperbole. Furthermore, do you really think that an American who takes their freedoms seriously and chooses to be pro-choice is on the same level as a Nazi? I am truly troubled by such accusations.

    Charlie, I have read your posts and see you as an educated and well spoken individual. With that being the case, your insulting remarks directed at Bubs should be corrected…you are above such actions. Let’s keep discussions like this out of the personal realm and in the arena of public opinion. Or, as you have called upon, at least focus on Constitutional law and rights. While it seems that you have a specific view based upon your knowledge of such things, please bear in mind that some of the finest experts on the Constitution see things drastically different from you.

    My answer to the question: No, not as out of the mainstream.

  38. - Bubs - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 3:37 pm:

    Charlie, Wonderboy, no offense taken. See you tomorrow. Bring your A-Game! ;)

  39. - Nick Name - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 3:46 pm:

    …just 20 percent of Americans believe that abortion “should not be permitted.”

    Why are the facts always so biased against conservatives? Why, oh, why???

    (/snark, with due respect to TDS)

    Who cares what the “mainstream” really is? Those that control the sound bites control the definition of mainstream anyway. You can cherry-pick all the facts you want and Chris Matthews, Tim Russert and Katie Couric will regurgitate the right-wing talking points with glee.

  40. - ZC - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 4:33 pm:

    I don’t think the mere fact that Roe has stood over 30 years, in and of itself, is much to say for keeping it or not. 30 years is one more than 29, which is one more than 28, and where do you draw that principled line?

    _Bowers v. Hardwick_, the case that found there was no constitutional protection for homosexual sodomy, was decided in 1986. It was overturned in 2003 by _Lawrence v. Texas_, and I say amen. A 17-year precedent didn’t deserve defending, so what is the magic divisor between 17 and 30?

    Bottom line, if the case is wrongly decided, it’s wrongly decided, and it doesn’t matter how old it is. If _Roe_ is to be defended, it must be on the merits, not on its age.

    And people who say that abortion should be banned in all cases are currently out of the mainstream, but a) not in all states, they’re not; b) people who would be willing to modify their stance and say abortion should not be available just because the mother is poor, or the mother does not want to have any more children, would definitely not be out of the political mainstream. You can get some opinion polls to get 50%+1 of the public to agree with those sentiments.

  41. - donchicago48 - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 4:40 pm:

    As I read through the comments above, I became increasinly disappointed at the many failures to recognize the “unalienable rights” of the child, who, absent human intervention, has every likelihood to enjoy “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness”. In at least one case, the entire concept of “unalienable rights” was denied… in the very same comment that espouses the abomination of so-called “gay-rights” AKA homosexual preferences.
    Thanks to those, like Charlie who shed some light on the actual notion of Human Rights, and the belief that one must weigh the child’s right to survive against the mother’s wishes for convenience.
    I note that semantics are important, because one side of human nature has always sought to dehumanize target groups before advocating their extermination.
    I invite you all to read David Kupelian’s eye-opening book entitled, “The Marketing of Evil” before you buy into recent trends that deny traditional moral societal values.

  42. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 5:17 pm:

    The answer is Yes, people who support an absolute ban on abortion are out of the mainstream, although the poll is misleading.

    The conundrum for the anti-choice movement is that their strongest argument against abortion is the belief that human life begins at conception. But, if you believe that, then in naturally follows that any abortion is homocide, even in cases of rape and incest, although when a woman can demonstrate that her life was imperiled, the homocide could be legally and morally justified.

    Keeping in mind that 1 in 4 women will be sexually assaulted in their lifetime, the only defensible anti-choice position is not one that sits too well with women, nor their husbands, fathers or brothers.

    For while it may be a noble act for a woman to carry her rapist’s child to term, it is an extraordinary thing for society to compel, and not something that many Americans would demand of any woman they know.

    The Democratic position on the otherhand resonates with the majority of Americans: Abortion should be safe, legal and rare.

  43. - Larry Horse - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 6:39 pm:

    I think that you can justify supporting abortion in the case of rape by the fact that the child has no right to be in the mother’s womb as the mother did not consent to the act that resulted in its being in there. Since it has no right to be in there, the mother has the right to remove it. Tragically, this means that the child will die, but nonetheless it had no right to be in the womb in the first place. The analogy that I like is that of a mentally troubled man who breaks into your house. Since he has no right to be in your house, you have the right to remove him from the premises, even though his mental condition means that he was not in control of his being in the house in the first place.

    If on the other hand, a mother has consentual unprotected sex and then neglects to use an emergency contraception afterwards, then she has taken a risk knowing full well that she could become pregnant, and thus I believe the child’s right to develop in the womb trumps the mother’s right to remove it as the mother fully consented to the act that resulted in the child’s implantation (of course if the pregnancy threatens the mother’s life or presents a serious threat to her long-term health, then she would have a right to an abortion as this is equivalent to self-defense).

  44. - Smitty Irving - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 7:42 pm:

    Perhaps these results will lead the media to quit automatically labelling anti-abortion people as “pro-life” - sorry, unless you are against abortion, the death penalty, and are a pacifist, you are not “pro-life” - most of the people I know who oppose abortion support the death penalty and the war in Iraq … .

  45. - triplemstrategies - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 9:38 pm:

    Safe, Legal and Rare……..
    Funny they put rare at the end. Seems that is the status it usually receives.

  46. - 6 Degrees of Separation - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 9:39 pm:

    Hoosier Daddy said:

    Yo, 6, I think you’ve torpedoed your own argument with your parenthetical. (Including a life of the mother exception makes it less than a total ban, ergo, legal, but with restrictions).

    Not really, IMO. I’ll bet the car title that a sizable majority of the 20% of “not allowers” would allow a life of the mother exception, if the question were asked. A can of pop says it’s in the 90% range. Any law that dictates the involuntary peril of one person to save another is a state-assisted-homicide-for-the-innocent law, which even ardent right to lifers are loath to support. Their real opposition is with the more ambiguous “health” of the mother exceptions, which they claim are loopholes big enough for a semi to drive through…mental well-being, “potential” health problems, etc. that are not reasonably life-threatening to the mother. I’ll also bet that a portion of the 20% of anti-abortionists would also allow a rape and/or incest exception, as would most of the 39% who would keep abortion legal but with stricter limits than existing.

    BTW, Larry Horse’s reasoning on the rape exception is well-stated, and could also be applied to incestuous pregnancies where unwillful conception can be proved.

  47. - Emily Booth - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 10:39 pm:

    The short answer is yes. A woman should be able to terminate an unwanted pregnancy without having to go to a backroom abortionist or to jail. A woman should have the right to vote. Jeez, I can’t believe we’re still having these conversations.

  48. - respectful - Monday, Jan 30, 06 @ 10:57 pm:

    The 38% who want no restrictions on abortion are out of the mainstream since 59% want some restrictions or abolition.

  49. - Nick Name - Tuesday, Jan 31, 06 @ 1:23 pm:

    A demonstration in right-wing twisted logic, courtesy of “Respectful”: The 38% who want no restrictions on abortion are out of the mainstream since 59% want some restrictions or abolition.

    “Some restrictions” and “abolition” are incompatible, but adding the two together gets Respectful a majority so he’ll take it.

    By the same “logic”, people who favor “some restrictions” are out of the mainstream because 58% of poll respondents are completely for or completely against abortion and do not want any mushy middle ground like “some restrictions”….

    Isn’t that obvious? Duh. ;)

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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