OpinionTrending Commentary

After The Election, Pro-life Americans Find Themselves in the Minority

On May 23, 2012, Gallup released a poll that showed that people who identify themselves as ‘pro-choice’ was at a record low of 41%.  Additionally, Americans who described themselves as pro-life, at the time, constituted 50% of the population.  That nine point margin in America’s ongoing culture war has flipped.  Pro-choice Americans are now 54% of the population, compared to 38% who are pro-life, according to Rasmussen.  As Allahpundit of Hot Air posted on November 15, “elections have consequences.”  However, it begs the question, where did all the pro-lifers go?

For one thing, we’re a liberal democracy – a republic to be exact.  As such, governments are based on public opinion, and opinion is shiftable sand.  Therefore, there are no permanent victories in democracy.  Conservative commentator George Will has spoken about this ad nauseum, and aptly made the observation that Sen. Barry Goldwater, who lost in the ’64 presidential election, knew about this aspect in American society.  Hence, why people say Goldwater didn’t lose in 1964, it just took sixteen years to count all the votes.  Reagan’s win in 1980 was the reaffirmation of Goldwater’s conservative conscience.

However, it cannot be denied that some Republican senate candidates made rather irresponsible remarks about rape and abortion on the campaign trail, which hurt the pro-life movement.  Richard Mourdock in Indiana and Todd Akin in Missouri are the two names that comes up frequently in this discussion.  Without a doubt, they paid a heavy price for their poorly constructed narratives that moved those leaning towards the pro-life argument, towards the pro-choice camp.   Allahpundit reaffirms this claim, citing a CNN poll from last August showing that, “[Abortion was] nice and steady there in the mid-20s for ‘legal under any circumstances’ over the past five years — until suddenly, in August of this year, the number jumps. Why? Well, what else happened in August this year? Right: Todd Akin opened his yapper about “legitimate rape” and women’s supposed biological defense mechanisms against it and that was the beginning of the end for Republican chances to take back the Senate. How big a deal was it? Weeks later, the NYT poll was seeing more support for the idea that abortion should be “generally available” than it had in over 15 years.”

So, if some people, who are pro-life, are wondering why they lost popular support, they need only to look at some of the politicians selected to support their cause in Washington D.C.  We need to be smarter.


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Matt Vespa

I'm a staunch Republican and a politics junkie who was recently the Executive Director for the Dauphin County Republican Committee in Harrisburg. Before that, I interned with the Republican Party of Pennsylvania in the summer of 2011 and Mary Pat Christie, First Lady of NJ, within the Office of the Governor of NJ in 2010. I was responsible for updating his personal contact list. My first political internship was with Tom Kean Jr's. U.S. Senate campaign in 2006.

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  1. I am very very pro choice. A woman’s health whatever it is should be between her and her doctor. Men should not dictate medical care for women. What if women ruled on men’s prostate tests, treatments, erectile dysfunction medicines, etc. A large majority of men do everything possible to keep from paying child support and medical bills for their children when they are a noncustodial parent. Cancelling drivers license does not work, so the mother and child(ren) live in proverty level.

    1. Valid point. I happen to disagree (obviously) – a life isn’t a medical decision. There’s always adoption of you feel your current economic situation isn”t suitable. That’s what my birth mother felt about me, although I admit I know nothing about the dynamics of my conception.

      If Democrats weren’t pushing for taxpayer-funded abortion, I wouldn’t be as adamant about my pro-life stance as I am now. I’m a social conservative, but I’m not a nut about it. However, I won’t pay for someone to end a human life.

  2. I’m at least 9 3/4’s across the this pond from Katie, but she certainly does make some valid points of comparison. However, I find it more interesting that extra emphases is placed on this subject every election season. And, since most of us have a ‘slip of the tongue’ year around & ignore our politicians deeds & misdeeds until our pet issues come up, we pounce on candidates ‘slips’ w/o review. Yes, we are a Republic (thank GOD) & the majority rules, (w-hen they speak/vote) Which is why Romney was our GOP candidate….and that the shift of %’s on the issue of abortion has come about…One side speaks up & takes more of an active participation role.

  3. An interesting article Matt. As a pro-life woman I cringed when listening to both the hysteria promoted by pro-choice screamers who thought women would lose their rights to contraception AND the sad misguided comments by, yes, white men, about abortion.

    As a Republican I would like to see the candidates manage a cohesive statement that reflects a strong majority opinion of what pro-life believe. But the Republican party also must do a better job getting the word out; certainly Democrats with the media in their pocket, are reaching and influencing more voters.

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