Jay Rogers
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The Forerunner

"Public Views" on abortion depend on questions asked

By Editorial Staff
Published April 1, 2008

NEW YORK, N.Y. (EP) – Polls taken to determine the American public’s attitude toward abortion may get very different results, depending on how the questions are worded.

That’s the conclusion of a New York Times analysis of abortion polling.

In a January 22 analysis of various abortion surveys, writer Tamar Lewin reported that in a New York Times/CBS News Poll only 29 percent said there should be a constitutional amendment prohibiting abortion, yet “when the same people were asked if there should be a constitutional amendment protecting the life of the unborn child, 50 percent said they would favor one.”

In another such discrepancy, over half of the people questioned in a 1985 survey by the Louis Harris organization said abortion is murder, while a Gallup Poll the same year showed that over 90 percent thought abortion was sometimes the best way out of a bad situation.

Lewin explained, “Polling experts agree that more people are far more likely to say they favor abortion rights when the question is framed in terms of a woman’s right to choose than when the question talks about protecting an unborn child.”


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