Americans Shift to the Right on Abortion: Poll

Majority call themselves 'pro-life' for first time in survey's history
By Wesley Oliver,  Newser Staff
Posted May 15, 2009 2:07 PM CDT
A protester holds a sign up for early morning traffic during a Pro-life rally.   (AP Photo/Bill Ross)
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(Newser) – For the first time in 15 years, a majority of Americans identified themselves as “pro-life” on the issue of abortion, a Gallup poll finds. In a drastic shift from just a year ago, 51% say they’re pro-life, 42% pro-choice, after a 50%-44% split in favor of pro-choice in 2008. The poll sees particularly significant shifts toward the position among women, Republicans, Protestants, and Catholics.

Pollsters suggest President Obama’s greater tolerance for abortion rights is pushing Americans to the right. One pro-life activist told the Boston Globe the results weren’t shocking, saying, “Americans are seeing through the PR-generated label, ‘pro-choice,’” and that Obama and Congress are on a “collision course with public opinion.”