By Dave Andrusko
A colleague at National Right to Life who studies these things pointed out an additional key finding in Gallup’s 2011 Values and Beliefs survey, conducted May 5-8.
We’ve already highlighted that a total of 61% of respondents said abortion should either be legal in only a few circumstances (39%) or illegal in all circumstances (22%). That compares with a total of 37% who said either that abortion should be legal in all circumstances (27%), or under most circumstances (10%). We’d also noted that this was an improvement from data derived in May 2008.
As you would expect, self-identified Republicans were much more pro-life and self-identified Democrats were more pro-abortion.
But the key group—the segment of the population that everyone is after—are Independents. We are continually told that to talk about their pro-life stance will hurt a candidate with this large, and growing larger, segment.
Truth be told their numbers track the national numbers almost to a “T.”
According to Gallup, 60% of Independents say abortion should be legal in only a few circumstances (42%) or illegal in all (18%).
Lesson? Candidates can and should talk about their pro-life convictions for the same reason we have discussed for forever: most Americans are much closer to where we are on abortion than to the pro-abortion side.