Americans Think New State Laws Will Reduce Number of Abortions
Pro-life state legislators are pushing several measures that critics view as restrictions on abortion, and most Americans agree that two of these proposals are at least somewhat likely to reduce the number of abortions in America.
New South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard is expected to sign a just-passed law in his state that would require women seeking an abortion to wait three days and have counseling about adoption and other parenting issues before undergoing the procedure. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 65% of American Adults support a three-day waiting period and counseling before an abortion. Twenty-four percent (24%) oppose such a requirement, and another 11% are not sure. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
Sixty-five percent (65%) also believe the waiting period and counseling are at least somewhat likely to reduce the number of abortions, including 33% who say they are Very Likely to do so. Thirty percent (30%) think the requirement is unlikely to reduce the prevalence of abortion, with seven percent (7%) who say it's Not At All Likely to have that effect.
Support is much lower for a bill approved by Texas lawmakers that requires pregnant women to see an ultrasound image (also known as a sonogram) of their fetus and to hear the fetus' heartbeat before having an abortion. Forty-eight percent (48%) of Americans favor the measure, while 38% are opposed. Fourteen percent (14%) are not sure about it.
However, 62% think it is at least somewhat likely that such a law would reduce the number of abortions, including 32% who say it is Very Likely. Thirty-one percent (31%) think such an outcome is unlikely, but that includes just seven percent (7%) who say it is Not At All Likely.
(Want a free daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook.
The survey of 1,000 Adults was conducted on March 7-8, 2011 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
Want to read more?
Become a Rasmussen Reader to read the article
Have an account?Log In
Become a ReaderSubscribe
Rasmussen Reports is a media company specializing in the collection, publication and distribution of public opinion information.
We conduct public opinion polls on a variety of topics to inform our audience on events in the news and other topics of interest. To ensure editorial control and independence, we pay for the polls ourselves and generate revenue through the sale of subscriptions, sponsorships, and advertising. Nightly polling on politics, business and lifestyle topics provides the content to update the Rasmussen Reports web site many times each day. If it's in the news, it's in our polls. Additionally, the data drives a daily update newsletter and various media outlets across the country.
Some information, including the Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll and commentaries are available for free to the general public. Subscriptions are available for $4.95 a month or 34.95 a year that provide subscribers with exclusive access to more than 20 stories per week on upcoming elections, consumer confidence, and issues that affect us all. For those who are really into the numbers, Platinum Members can review demographic crosstabs and a full history of our data.
To learn more about our methodology, click here.