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Bar graph showing results of July 2013 poll on abortion. Majority supports legal abortion, wants Constitution, not states, to decide law, opposes state laws making it more difficult for clinics to operate, and supports unconstitutional 20-week abortion bans.
A majority of Americans—55 percent—continue to think abortion should be legal in most or all cases, compared to just 41 percent who believe it should be illegal in most or all cases, a new ABC/Washington Post poll finds. Similarly, 54 percent oppose state "legislation that makes it more difficult for abortion clinics to operate," 37 percent strongly opposing it. An even larger majority—66 percent—think the U.S. Constitution, and not the states, should set abortion law. And yet a 56 percent majority thinks abortion should only be legal without restriction up to the 20 weeks that states like Texas keep passing, rather than the 24 weeks that the Supreme Court has said is constitutional. Go figure.

If nothing else, this shows the incoherence of the public debate and the weakness of opinion polling: A significant number of people told the pollster that they think the Constitution should prevail, that they oppose state laws making it more difficult for clinics to operate ... and that they support a restriction that is currently unconstitutional and that has been in the news most recently as part of a larger attempt to close abortion clinics.

I guess for some people it probably seems like a reasonable way to walk the fence, to be "moderate," "reasonable," to stay out of the big fights ... to be politely squeamish about a decision they're unlikely to face because their own lives don't involve the lack of money or access to reliable health care that make it difficult for some women to obtain an abortion early on.

But the political reality is this: 20-week bans are part of the exact same movement that wants to close abortion clinics by forcing them to meet ambulatory surgical center requirements and having doctors with admitting privileges at local hospitals. And it's certainly not linked to a movement to make birth control affordable and accessible, let alone early abortions.

Originally posted to Laura Clawson on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 07:51 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.


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Comment Preferences

  •  that's not incoherence; (6+ / 0-)

    it tells us that they think the SCOTUS got the details wrong.

    •  Probably closer to ignorance of what (28+ / 0-)

      Roe v Wade says. For those of us who want abortion to remain a choice, perhaps we should be educating about viability.

      For me, "mind you own damn business" works also.

      •  In the end, it is no one's business, and that is (19+ / 0-)

        the only way to end the debate, you can hate abortion all you want but it is my body

        •  And that means it is not GOD's body, and if (8+ / 0-)

          I don't believe in your god and you can;t prove your god exists, then god has nothing to say

          •  You're avoiding the obvious. (8+ / 0-)

            Don't mistake me for someone who wants to outlaw abortion. I most definitely am not.

            But--if we want to defend the right to choose, then we have to answer the best arguments of the other side. And you're pretending their best argument doesn't exist.

            Their best argument is that, at some point, the fetus becomes a person. Thus at some point, it's not just the woman's body--it's two bodies, of two people.

            Now sure, you can say the fetus doesn't have an independent body till it's born. But that's a conclusion, not a reason. Obviously at some point before full-term birth, the fetus's brain and body become virtually indistinguishable from a newborn's. Just proposing criteria for deciding when a fetus becomes a person (e.g., at birth) is not enough; we need to give reasons why our criteria are better than their criteria.

            The most compelling reasoning I have found was set out by the science writer Gregg Easterbrook in a 2000 article in The New Republic. The full text is available here: (click the link that says "Read the article courtesy of your local library").

            The most important part:

            At about the twenty-third week the lungs become able to function, and, as a result, 23 weeks is the earliest date at which premature babies have survived. At 24 weeks the third trimester begins, and at about this time, as the cerebral cortex becomes "wired," fetal EEG readings begin to look more and more like those of a newborn...By the twenty-seventh week...the fetal EEG reading shows well-organized activity that partly oveoverlaps with the brain activity of adults, although the patterns are far from mature...By the thirty-second week, the fetal brain pattern is close to identical to that of a full-term baby.
            The implication of this is that unrestricted abortion should be available up to at least 24 weeks, and possibly up to 32 weeks; but after 32 weeks the interests of the fetus as its own person should be given some consideration under the law.

            Where to draw the line between 24 weeks and 32 weeks seems like the question deserving the most focus.

            "The true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals." - Barack Obama

            by HeyMikey on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 09:11:38 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Throw in something, then, about brain activity (6+ / 0-)

              and things like outlawing abortions for those fetuses without a developed brain should become a non-issue.  I think forcing women to bear fetuses to term without brains is particularly cruel.

            •  Well done./nt (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              HeyMikey, thomask, auapplemac

              In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act--Orwell

              by jhannon on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 09:48:30 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Abortion is NOT unrestricted under Roe v Wade (8+ / 0-)

              The biggest problem in the abortion discussion is lack of knowledge about the constitutional ruling Roe v. Wade.

              Abortion is this country is not unrestricted at every stage of pregnancy. Under Roe woman can NOT get an abortion for any reason in all phases of her pregnancy, yet the ANTIs have made the public believing they can, and the news media never does their home work. Besides the majority of abortions are performed before 13 weeks.

              Maybe everyone should go back and read the Roe. V. Wade decisions. The Roe ruling regulates abortion: Under Roe in the first trimester a woman rights  a woman can get an abortion for an reason. The second trimester the state can regulate abortion as long it does not put an undue burden on women. (limiting access does). In the third trimesters, a woman can only get an abortion if her pregnancy threaten her life or health, or she has been raped.

              The tX law is not just about abortion at 20 weeks. It is about access to all abortions.

              •  Casey v Planned Parenthood (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Richard Lyon, HeyMikey

                I am not a lawyer but it's important to know other important decisions, Thornburgh, Akron then Casey. Casey came in 1992 (after Roe v Wade of 1973) and could have overturned Roe v Wade, but didn't. But it shifted the framework and is what laws are being measured against. Roe and Thornburgh called early abortion a "fundamental right", but O'Connor's plurality in Casey called it a "significant liberty interest". There was a concern that, because there was a collision course between earlier and earlier viability and later and later safety of abortions, the original framework was flawed. So it actually threw out the trimester framework. (1st trimester 0-13wks, 2nd 14-27, 3rd 28-term) It allowed state restrictions at any time as long as they didn't represent an "undue burden". Undue burden was  "the purpose or effect of placing a substantial obstacle in the path of a woman seeking an abortion of a nonviable fetus." This definitely describes the latest laws being passed around the country. Please some constitutional lawyers jump in here.

                •  By the way the "collision course" is bunk. (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  At the time of Casey viability was 22-23 weeks, and it really hasn't changed. I don't think it will continue to decrease much in the future. We have hit the wall. Second trimester abortions, while, doable, are so much more risky than 1st trimester. It may be a right, but it is terribly irresponsible to wait until the second trimester (>13 weeks) to have an elective termination. I agree with Roe: unrestricted in the 1st trimester. But that's not what we have. We have Casey.

            •  Sorry. (3+ / 0-)

              Even if it's viable, and 23 weeks is REALLY early and often leaves the fetus with major health issues, the woman's life trumps the fetus's life.  I suppose one could induce labor and if the fetus lives, it lives. But she is alive and breathing and thinking--and in my book her right to life trumps that of the fetus.

              The last time we mixed religion and politics people got burned at the stake.

              by irishwitch on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 10:35:41 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  but these 20-week bans have given the public (0+ / 0-)

              the impression that a 20 week fetus is viable on its own. Doesn't matter what science says.

              •  We all agree on that. (0+ / 0-)

                All involved in this comment thread, I mean.

                "The true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals." - Barack Obama

                by HeyMikey on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 02:46:25 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  Well, the Supreme Court has said it becomes (5+ / 0-)

          someone else's business once the fetus becomes viable.

          I think the problem here is that very few people have the details of when that is straight.  20 weeks or 5 months sounds reasonable to them.  And since that's the number being thrown around the most lately, they assume that's it.  I don't think there's any disconnect here - just  missing factual knowledge.

          "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

          by gustynpip on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 09:03:03 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  We need to be careful with using pronouns. (4+ / 0-)

            "them" in your third sentence is for the general public, but as I understand it the USSC says 24 weeks is the minimum limit.  I read your statement a couple of times before I understood that you weren't saying the USSC says 20 weeks sounds reasonable.

            I agree - factual knowledge is key.  Questions should be worded something like "would you outlaw abortion after the point where the fetus would be able to survive outside the womb on its own"?  Do you understand doctors place this at about 24 weeks at the minimum, but that there is still major development going on with the brain and nervous system up until 32 weeks"? (just using the quote from above).  

            Do you understand the cost to care for a baby born at 24 weeks is eleventy gazillion dollars and Republicans and insurance companies refuse to cover this if it's an elective birth?  Sorry - I couldn't help but throw this in there.  Republicans prove they care only until birth, at which point they don't want to spend a dime on the baby or even allow health insurance plans to do so.

        •  When does it become a person? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          HeyMikey, ManhattanMan

          Are you willing to allow abortion up to the moment of delivery?  That's seems to be consistent with an your statement.

          My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.—Carl Schurz
          "Shared sacrifice!" said the spider to the fly.—Me

          by KingBolete on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 09:03:24 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  We need to reframe this. (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          HappyinNM, Bill W, Neon Mama, merrywidow

          As far as I'm concerned, the whole debate is ultimately about our right to decide whether another organism can live inside of us, feed off of some of our nutrients, etc., without our consent.

          •  If you make it a... (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            HeyMikey, ColoTim, merrywidow

   issue, then the 20 or 24 week bans start to make sense.

            If somebody pitches a tent on my land and I do nothing, eventually (in most states) that person will acquire rights to the land.

            If somebody wants a 23-week abortion, I have to wonder why they didn't get a 12-week one instead. There may be good reasons, I don't know. But a line must be drawn somewhere.

            Also, I don't like the notion of "viability" as a measure. Technology is always changing and the weeks at which a fetus is viable will always change. Or, as some have pointed out, most of us aren't "viable" until we're in our late teens...

            •  I don't see how I made it about (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              HappyinNM, gfv6800

              property rights.  I don't think the tent thing is a good analogy.

              At the risk of sounding cold, by your logic, at what point does, say, a tick acquire the rights to the "land" of someone's body?

              That's not to call a fetus a parasite, really.  But if it's an unwanted pregnancy, there are some comparisons, in that these are both organisms living and feeding off of one's body, despite being unwelcome.  

              •  Wow! (0+ / 0-)

                It sure sounds like you consider a fetus in an unwanted pregnancy to be a parasite.

                I am very pro-choice, but an argument comparing the fetus to a tick is not going to do anything positive in promoting reproductive rights.

                •  I understand why people don't like (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  that comparison.  But if it's an unwanted pregnancy, it's an organism benefiting at the expense of another.  The only difference I see between that and actual parasitism is that the latter generally applies to a relationship between organisms of two different species.

                  This is an unpopular observation to make, I know, because fetuses are still human.  But from an objective standpoint, it doesn't seem to me as though there's much difference.  Obviously a wanted pregnancy wouldn't apply here, since there are at the very least emotional benefits to the pregnant woman.

                  And this wouldn't apply to children who have already been born, since they're no longer living inside of another being.

                  •  A few points regarding this: (0+ / 0-)

                    I understand your point from a biological sense, although from that standpoint there is no diferrence between a wanted pregnancy and an unwanted one.

                    I have never heard a definition of parasitism that includes reproduction, or even the same species in any scenario.  If that is the case, all species that bear live young would be considered to be carrying parasites while pregnant.

                    I understand your point regarding choice, but an argument can be framed in such an offensive manner that it is rejected out of hand.  This is where I have an issue with your comments; not the point you are making, but the way you are stating it.

            •  this is why owmen get later term abortons (5+ / 0-)

              Severe problems with a fetus often can not be detected until late in a pregnancy.  In some rare cases these problem pregnancies can threaten a woman's reproductive health or life, so her doctor recommends the best option which may be a late term an abortion. Late term abortions are already retricted under Roe and are very rare, and not done for casual reason, like the ANTIS would like you to believe.

              In the a case of rape, rarely are late term abortions done for this reason, but maybe in the second trimester.
              If a young woman is uneducated in sex ed, has been molested and raped, she may no even know she is pregnant until later.  In other cases women may get abortions after 13 weeks because of waiting period laws that delay her access to an earlier abortion.

            •  Possibly because a health problem (4+ / 0-)

              that affects the mother wasn't discovered until that time. My cousin's fetus  was anencephalic and it wasn't discovered until past 20 weeks. It was non-viable.  

              A woman's body is no one's property--I think anti-slavery  amendment bans that, though women were considered a husband's property, until way too recently-- which is why I disagree with the argument The Dude posted.

              The last time we mixed religion and politics people got burned at the stake.

              by irishwitch on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 10:41:13 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  My cousin also had suffered from (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                pre-eclampsia in an earlier pregnancy--which can be life-threatening. The anencephalis wasn't discovered until AFTER 20 weeks, which means under the 20 week ban, she'd be forced to carry that fetus till it got around to being miscarried. Rather cruel to force a woman who wanted the child  to have to carry a non-viable fetus without a brain until such time as it finally popped out. We don't dot hat without cows, because sepsis can set in. But apparently women are different with their Magic Lady Parts that can work miracles.

                The last time we mixed religion and politics people got burned at the stake.

                by irishwitch on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 11:58:48 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

          •  Is that like the conservatives (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            HappyinNM, Neon Mama

            Who complain about people feeding off of their tax dollars without their consent?

          •  Why that doesn't cut it. (0+ / 0-)

            OK, consider a 30-week pregnancy. Suppose we decide the mother has an absolute right to terminate the pregnancy because she no longer wants to provide nutrients from her own body.

            But the fetus is probably viable outside the womb. Should the fetus be left to die? Or must it go into the NICU and be kept alive, nourished, and allowed to grow? And if it is allowed to grow, does the father have an obligation to provide financial support till age 18? Does the mother?

            Why or why not?

            "The true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals." - Barack Obama

            by HeyMikey on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 09:54:20 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Why shouldn't individuals have the right (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              to decide whether another organism can live inside of them against their will, though?

              I would also argue that it would be more damaging, psychologically, to the child, to be born to parents that don't want it.  Yes, there's adoption, but there's no guarantee the child will be adopted.  Then they grow up feeling unwanted.

              •  You don't get it. The Qs: what comes next? & why? (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Be Skeptical
                Why shouldn't individuals have the right to decide whether another organism can live inside of them against their will, though?
                In deciding whether an action is legal or illegal, we have to decide: what are the consequences? Who has to deal with the consequences--mom? Dad? Fetus/baby? Society?

                If you make a mess, who has to clean it up?

                The fetus/baby didn't ask to be conceived; society didn't ask for the fetus/baby to be conceived; neither the fetus/baby nor society asked the mom to wait till late in pregnancy to decide to abort. Why should fetus/baby or society be solely responsible for the consequences?

                I am not suggesting there are easy, obvious answers. But the questions are obvious, and obviously important. If you want to be taken seriously, you need to deal with them.

                "The true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals." - Barack Obama

                by HeyMikey on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 10:11:26 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  The rational answer to your questions is (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  irishwitch, The Dude 415

                  women don't terminate late term pregnancies because they no longer want to provide nourishment. Most typical is because there's something seriously wrong with the fetus. It could also be that the fetus is harming or killing her.

                  Ask Rick Santorum. His wife was carrying a fetus that had some kind of deformity. It was determined that the issue could be remedied by doing surgery on the fetus while it was in utero. The surgery was done, and the doctor said all would be well unless his wife began to run a fever. A few days later, his wife began to run a fever. Somehow???? the fetus was delivered shortly thereafter, but only survived for a short time. Did they want that baby? Of course, or they wouldn't have opted for the surgery. Was that baby worth the loss of his wife? I guess not. Does he have the right to make decisions for me or any other woman? Does anyone else in society have that right? SCOTUS said NO.

                  •  You avoid Dude 415's point. Wrong on Supreme Ct. (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:

                    I was responding to The Dude 415. His point was that circumstances like the health problems of the fetus/baby or mother are irrelevant; the mother should, at any time, just be able to revoke her consent to another organism living inside her and using her nutrients.

                    Does anyone else in society have that right? SCOTUS said NO.
                    Please read the other comments re: we all need to re-read Roe v. Wade. Here's a good summary:
                    The Court ruled that in the first trimester of pregnancy, state laws and regulations may not interfere with a woman's right to terminate a pregnancy. This means that the decision to have an abortion is left in the hands of the woman and her health care provider. During the second trimester, state laws and regulations can regulate abortion in order to protect the woman's health. During the last trimester, and after the fetus is viable (developed enough to survive outside the mother's womb), state laws and regulations may prohibit abortion except when it is necessary to preserve the life or health of the woman.

                    Note: I am not saying I agree with the Roe v. Wade trimester framework. I am simply responding to your claim that "SCOTUS said NO."

                    "The true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals." - Barack Obama

                    by HeyMikey on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 02:55:17 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  When I said SCOTUS said no, I was referring (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:

                      to late term abortions. And SCOTUS carved out life and health. When Congress passed (I think they passed) their ridiculous "partial-birth" abortion ban, they were referring to late term abortions. I believe nobody contested it in court because they are afraid of the present SCOTUS. Since Dude 415 rec'd my comment, perhaps you misunderstood the comment. Or perhaps it was stated tongue-in-cheek. It doesn't matter, as it seems we're all on the same page.

                •  I DO get it. (0+ / 0-)

                  I'm not even bothering to address late-term abortions, because, as pointed out extensively on here, women don't get late-term abortions just because they feel like it.  If you wait that long to have one, generally, it's because you originally had every intention of carrying that child to term.

                  And who says the fetus is responsible for the consequences?  I'm tired of this argument about "instead of aborting they should just do the responsible thing."  Guess what?  In some cases, aborting IS being responsible, and IS taking responsibility.

                  Do you seriously think this is a decision women make lightly?  Especially in cases of late-term abortions?

                  •  No, I don't. (0+ / 0-)

                    There is a difference between what you or I think is ideal and what is politically possible. I am trying to address how to get the best possible political deal, in an environment where we increasingly see 20-week rules being adopted.

                    In contemporary America, saying "a woman should be able to revoke her consent to another organism using her nutrients, at any time" is not going to be politically persuasive. That is going to get you cut out of the discussion immediately.

                    Maybe your goal is to move the Overton window leftward, and not to get your position actually adopted. If so, that's a legit tactic. But if so, then let's get that out on the table here among Kossacks and acknowledge that's what you're doing.

                    The zone of state interference in pregnancy decisions is being expanded. I'm trying to propose a way to get pregnant women more freedom from government interference, not less.

                    The way to do that is to tie the expansion of individual choice to neutral, objective criteria. Like brain function.

                    "The true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals." - Barack Obama

                    by HeyMikey on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 03:03:26 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

              •  Many adopted people still feel unwanted. (0+ / 0-)

                I just heard a woman on tv say that the other day. She said, "I can't get over the fact that the first person who had a chance to love me----didn't." I'm certainly not saying that's always the case, but it happens.

                Also, think right of privacy as opposed to property rights. I believe that's what SCOTUS did in Roe v Wade.

          •  I think that you have a point in that women (0+ / 0-)

            should have control of their own bodies.

            Calling a fetus, "another organism" that "can live inside of us . . . without our consent" makes it sound as if you regard the fetus as a parasite.  I would think twice about the wording of your statement.

            •  I didn't mean to make it sound that way, (0+ / 0-)

              but a fetus IS another organism, living inside of you during gestation.  My point simply is that it seems to me that anyone has the right to decide for themselves whether they're ok with this.

        •  For the most part I agree... (0+ / 0-)

          That said, at some point you have to face the issue of "what" and "when" a life begins, and anyone with a moral POV would have problems with abortion, the longer term the more so.

          It's definitely an individual decision, not something to be encouraged or publicly funded. If you don't recognize this, and why significant portions of the population feel this way, you simply haven't undertaken a comprehensive examination of the moral and ethical issues involved.

          Personal choice? Yes. With limits? IMO Yes.

      •  Of course (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        shoeless, nocynicism, Neon Mama

        People don't get that Roe v Wade is about a woman having the right to the fourth amendment as any other citizen who is male does.  What's going to be next with our medical records? Right now it's with reproduction but in the next ten yrs it could be anything else to keep us in line from having a choice and say over our own lives and medical care.

      •  Roe v Wade from the 70s. Then NO Viability at 23 (6+ / 0-)

        weeks.  Medicine has changed.  If Blackmun re-wrote the decision today, odds are the whole second trimester logic of "legal but restrictable" would be written differently.

        Folks might not like that, but Blackmun was a product of MN and heavily influenced by the science of the day, as represented by Mayo Clinic.

        •  but abortion after the first trimester are even (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          irishwitch, Denver11

          rarer now than in the 70s because of advances in science and medicine. Roe decision is perfectly crafted and balances the the rights of the woman equally with that of the fetus.

          Today when a woman who has planned her pregnancy has more options to save a viable fetus in a troubled pregnancy  t is only in rare instances that she would  need a late term abortion.

          •  don't disagree, just think the rationale would be (0+ / 0-)

            slightly different .... then viability was the main focus.  Now I think viability would be discussed in context of "unknown future viability" - i.e., need time to allow for better assessment of health/developmental status.

      •  The key fact of Roe V. Wade (5+ / 0-) that it IS the compromise.  It's not a starting point FOR compromise.

        America, we can do better than this...

        by Randomfactor on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 09:28:34 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Part ignorance, part incoherence (5+ / 0-)

        i wonder how many people understand that (1) the Supreme Court basically said abortion should be legal at least up to viability, (2) viability is about 24 weeks from the last missed period and (3) much testing for fetal abnormalities and genetic issues is done at about 23-24 weeks.  Also some complications don't show up until post-viability but threaten the woman's health.  So in many cases women don't find out about a complication until after 20 weeks, and just about at the point of viability or even later.

        As to the incoherence, these polls never say what the respondents mean by "illegal".  Who should be punished, the doctor?  The woman?  Should they go to jail?  For how long?

        The also never ask what the goal of regulation should be.  Should it be to ensure that abortion is as accessible as possible early on, so young women, poor women, rural women don't end up unable to get an abortion in the first trimester and end up having it much later?  Should it be to make it safe but not unduly burdensome on the clinics?  Or should the purpose of regulation be to make it difficult to find a provider and burdensome on the clinics so there are fewer clinics?
        When many people say they think abortion should be "illegal" they don't envision women going to jail, as South Dakota found when they passed a draconian law that was repealed in a referendum.  They more mean it should not be a casual decision, that there should be alternatives available.  Of course it is rarely a casual decision for a pregnant woman.

        Above all most people don't think of abortion as part of a full spectrum of reproductive health that includes accurate sex education, available contraception, timely pregnancy screening, scientifically accurate counseling, prenatal care, ample time to make decisions that are influenced by factors like rape, incest, fetal abnormality, complications with the pregnancy , and don't consider how to really make abortion safe, legal and rare, which is really what most people seem to want.  Once sex enters the picture many people get a bit irrational.

        Don't bet your future on 97% of climate scientists being wrong. Take action on climate now!

        by Mimikatz on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 11:06:47 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  For me, your last line sums it all up. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Brooke In Seattle

          I guess that's what last lines usually do. When we become an adult society where everyone finally realizes that sex is a normal part of the human experience, all this crap will become unimportant. I don't see it happening in my lifetime. I'm a liberal, and it took me several years to accept the fact that my parents did that nasty stuff.

    •  I'd bet a lot of people have no (19+ / 0-)

      real understanding of or knowledge about the various gestational stages and their relationship to number of weeks, which can have varying definitions and difficulties with determination.  Therefore, they have little comprehension of the implications for the pregnant woman of X number of weeks.

      •  Exactly my thought.... (19+ / 0-)

        I'm pregnant right now, 26 weeks to be exact.  But at 20 weeks, I was still having tests done to make sure there were no fetal abnormalities.  By 24 weeks, my doctors were sure that everything was normal.

        This is my first pregnancy, and if you would have asked me a year ago, I probably would have said 20 weeks is more than enough time to determine if you want the baby or not because I was not aware of gestational stages, fetal testing, etc. but living the reality of how crucial those additional 4 weeks are, obviously 24 weeks is the law for a reason.  The SC got this one right.

        So the logical conclusion is that people being polled are just ignorant as to why those additional weeks are so important, not that they supposed additional abortion restrictions.

        Repealing Obamacare and cutting spending is not an economic plan.

        by SuzieQ4624 on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 08:37:05 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I would say (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Neon Mama, Heart of the Rockies

          To me I would say any one who wanted to have a say over a female's body would have to take the psychology class of child development.  I took it last fall and it was really great in learning about children from pregnancy to the teens.  And they want to be ignorant. They don't want to be educated because of the whole anti-intellectual nonsense going on with that party.  Science means nothing to them.

          •  I think science actually means that they can't (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Heart of the Rockies

            do whatever they want to believe is right.  It conflicts with their belief, and their gut feeling has to be allowed to trump some outsider (like a scientist) no matter how much data they have to support their opinion.

            Science means a restriction to them, so they're against it.  Unfortunately, their selfishness in giving in to their beliefs trumps any sense of empathy towards others or sense of community and sharing.

        •  See my comment above .... if they got it "right" (4+ / 0-)

          it was a bit of an accident.  Back then (1973 or thereabouts) there was little to no viability at 24 weeks, now there is decent survival at 23 weeks, while still zero at 20 weeks.  And back then, about all one could test for was Downs syndrome, so while viability has improved, the ability to detect later developmental defects that would effect future survival have also improved, thus extending the period of uncertainty about healthy fetus.

          •  I didn't say they got it right for the.... (4+ / 0-)

            right reasons, just that they got it right, accidental or not.  Whatever their reasoning was, the law is correct as it stands and doesn't need to be changed.  What ignorant people need to understand is that no reasonable woman would wait thru all close to 6 months of feeling bloated and crappy just to have an abortion if she didn't want the baby.  The only logical reason to have an abortion past 2-3 months is that the fetus is not viable and/or severely abnormal.

            The number of tests they can do now is mind blowing.  I literally have a 3d image of my baby's face (although it kind of looks like an alien, it's still cool).  They can test for down syndrome with just a finger prick of my blood (no more needle in the uterus as they used to do), they can see they blood pumping thru his little heart and every piece of the spine. It's pretty amazing, but they didn't do these tests until around 20 weeks when those parts are developed enough to test.

            Repealing Obamacare and cutting spending is not an economic plan.

            by SuzieQ4624 on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 10:00:55 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Well congratulations :) (6+ / 0-)

          I hope all goes well for you.

          You also make a good point.

          I hope that the quality of debate will improve,
          but I fear we will remain Democrats.

          Who is twigg?

          by twigg on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 09:03:36 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Of course not (7+ / 0-)

        Of course they don't. They don't "believe" in sex education. Why would they know how the process of pregnancy goes?

      •  I am one of those people. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I have no clue as to the science involved. Yet, I still have an opinion.

        Flame if you want, but there are 200 million voting-age people just like me.

        We need to understand that this issue won't be settled by science. It will be a messy, emotional decision. And no matter what I (or anyone) learn about trimesters and lung development and heartbeats and rape statistics the outcome will be ugly and it will make most Americans unhappy.

        •  As heartbreaking as it would be.... (6+ / 0-)

          like I mentioned above, no reasonable woman would wait 6 months to have an abortion (24 weeks) if she simply didn't want the baby.  The only logical reason to have one this last in term is because of fetal abnormality.

          Doctors have to wait until the fetus is developed enough to test for things like down syndrome, spinal deformities, etc. which is right around 20 weeks.

          I understand it's emotional to think about, but why not shift that emotional empathy to the woman who has to make that choice.  Imagine carrying a baby for 5-6 months only to find out that it's not viable and having to make the heartbreaking decision to end the pregnancy.

          Women who simply don't want the baby typically wouldn't wait this long to terminate the pregnancy.  A vast majority of women waiting until 24 weeks probably want the baby, but have found, thru medical testing, that it's not viable or will be severely deformed.

          Basically, pregnancy isn't just about the fetus, it's also about the woman carrying that fetus around.  

          Repealing Obamacare and cutting spending is not an economic plan.

          by SuzieQ4624 on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 10:07:25 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  An opinion without having "a clue." (0+ / 0-)

          Is this common for you?  What about other topics such as fracking, climate change, bio engineering of seeds, pesticides, vaccinations, etc., etc.?

          Not everyone can be an expert of all of these modern developments, but not having a clue is irresponsible.  One of the primary reasons for universal, free education is to prepare people for a participatory democracy.

    •  Most people think Roe is 1st Trimester (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      So they have no idea that 20 weeks is a restriction beyond that. Most people also think that about half of abortions take place beyond this point. Which is thanks to the language employed by the Right and a piss poor job of countering it on our side.

      I've long wondered at the efficacy of fighting for more than 20 weeks as elective. It's wildly unpopular and basically no one has elective abortions at that point anyway. A big problem is that Republicans can promote a popular time frame ban, and use it to mask the true goal of the bill, which is to shut down clinics for the poor.

      Strategically, I don't think it makes much sense to handle this the way we have. Even most Democrats don't support legal abortion beyond 20 weeks. We end up being on weaker ground to support a choice for women, because of the theoretical possibility that someone, somewhere may decide to have an abortion five or more months in, for reasons other than personal health or fetal defects.

      Do recall that Roe was based on viability outside the womb, which has changed since the 70s. I personally have no issue with elective abortions in the 3rd term, but I am a small minority and I'm much more concerned about preserving access to the %99 of abortions that take place in widely popular time frames.

    •  Quite possibly (0+ / 0-)

      There's often a difference between how people interpret the constitution and how the clowns on the court interpret it so there's nothing inconsistent with people believing that the constitution supports a 20 month change versus the currently 24 month deadline that is currently the law of the land.  

      My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.—Carl Schurz
      "Shared sacrifice!" said the spider to the fly.—Me

      by KingBolete on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 09:07:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not very likely. (0+ / 0-)

      What is more likely is that since media coverage has been full of the 20 week time frame, with no mention of the fact that the Roe standard is 24 weeks, it's just a memory thing. Most Americans are poorly educated about health sciences, and the forced-birthers have worked hard to make sure people have a distorted idea of fetal viability.

      Workers of the world, unite! You have nothing to lose but your shackles. It is by the picket line and direct action that true freedom will be won, not by electing people who promise to screw us less than the other guy.

      by rhonan on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 11:37:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Do you think (0+ / 0-)

      that all those people actually know the differences between a 20- and 24-week fetus?

      I doubt it. I don't.

      We decided to move the center farther to the right by starting the whole debate from a far-right position to begin with. - Former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay

      by denise b on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 05:58:11 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Just too many variables to set a date (4+ / 0-)

    other than viability....and if I thought we could all compromise at 20 weeks and move on, but they will never move on...

  •  As if we need more evidence that (7+ / 0-)

    the general public is ignorant on the substance of the issues of the day. You can thank the Republican destruction of education, FNC's pervasiveness, and decades of economic pressure for that result, I think . . .

    "Lone catch of the moon, the roots of the sigh of an idea there will be the outcome may be why?"--from a spam diary entitled "The Vast World."

    by bryduck on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 08:27:06 AM PDT

  •  I think the states should leave alone (16+ / 0-)

    all abortions.  Late term abortions are not common and are performed when they are medically indicated. The decision of when a late term abortion is medically indicated should be made by a woman and her physician.

    Late term abortions are good for the social conservatives to use for their propaganda because they can be described in gruesome terms, but they are only performed when the fetus in nonviable or severely defective, or when there is serious risk to the health of the mother.

  •  The reality seems to be that many (7+ / 0-)

    people are genuinely ambivalent about abortion. Being pro-choice does not mean being pro-abortion but it typically gets framed that way.

    There also really is no such thing as the absolutely correct cut off point that makes an abortion a late term abortion. Pregnancies are not identical and medical technology changes the possibilities for early deliveries. It is not an issue that is ever going to fit tidily in to a well defined pigeon hole.

    Privacy and choice are things that people expect for themselves and are often less inclined to extend to others.  

    •  I agree that advancing medical technology (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ColoTim, Neon Mama

      makes viability a moving target, but the 20 week threshold is only an attempt by Republicans to make abortion more difficult to obtain.  There is no scientific reason for it, and fetal abnormalities are sometimes discovered after 20 weeks.

      I think that most Americans know very little about how their body works, and that they simply latch on to 20 weeks as a reasonable number because they have been hearing it a lot lately.

      •  Liberals have painted themselves into a corner (0+ / 0-)

        with this issue of fetal abnormalities.  We are supposed to accept the burdening of parents with the medical bankruptcy and lifelong care-taking of the "defective" child.  There is no accounting for the the well being of the  woman, the siblings or the father in this.
        I am glad this is coming forth.

      •  The 20 weeks is an attempt by the Republicans (3+ / 0-)

        to gradually move the goal post.  They've been incredibly successful at this with their various "regulations" (you know, those things the Republicans hate so much?).  Once they whittle it down to 20, it'll be 16.  After all, if a woman has 4 months to make a decision, that should be plenty.  Then down to 12 - 3 months?  If she can't make a decision in that time, there's something wrong with her.  Etc.  

        "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

        by gustynpip on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 09:12:26 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  This ambiguity is what is losing the reproductive (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gustynpip, Brooke In Seattle

      I am pro-abortion for women that are not ready to take care of their offspring.  When women stop having babies under dire predicament, social policies will adjust to accommodate the well-being of mothers and children.  Look at Japan and other European nations whose birth rates have dropped.  Their governance has adjusted to take better care.

    •  What I tell people (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mr MadAsHell, gustynpip, Neon Mama

      What I tell people is ask them the question of if they respect the Constitution and of course if they're a right winger they'll say yes.  And then I ask them why don't they respect the fourth amendment for a woman? Of course then they go into how the fetus has the Constitution too.  I in response say they don't not since I'm the citizen and they are not and don't even have a birth certificate or any other proof of citizenship etc.  Until you get that paper work you aren't a citizen.  And their response to that shows they don't care about the Constitution and it's nothing but wanting to control women. And of course they don't want any type of social programs whether for the women who are pregnant and poor and later the child.

    •  The ambivalence I detect (0+ / 0-)

      Is that many people are okay with abortion for medical purposes, but are not as comfortable with abortion for non-medical purposes.

  •  For our politicians (4+ / 0-)

    For our politicians, those numbers mean "the people are out of the mainstream and reproductive privacy is an extremist position".  

    Most people are pro-choice in some respect.  They want the government out of their private decision making.  

    Only the politicians can't see it.  

  •  The anti-choicers are using the 20 week ban as (10+ / 0-)

    broad cover for laws that would shut down most or all abortions period.  

    It's important to talk, talk, talk to family and friends about what these laws will truly do, and to also include in the discussion the reasons women have terminations later in pregnancy;  severe fetal anomalies, or life threatening complications of pregnancy.  

    •  Exaxtly... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Brooke In Seattle

      but that's the reason Repubs framed the argument this way.  A 20 weeks ban seems reasonable on it's face, until you examine what they're actually trying to accomplish with their so called 20 week ban (shut down clinics).

      Additionally, most people don't understand that most fetal abnormalities aren't detected until right around 20 weeks, when most of the fetus is developed.  

      If they took the time to understand the reason the 20 week is unreasonable, they would likely change their mind.

      Repealing Obamacare and cutting spending is not an economic plan.

      by SuzieQ4624 on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 10:17:09 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Polling on abortion rarely capture intensity... (7+ / 0-)

    The problem the good guys and the American public are generally supportive of reproductive freedom, but "meh" when it comes to getting off their ass and protecting it.

    The anti-choicers hold vigils in state house chambers, quit their jobs so they can harass people, and bus in 10-year olds from the local Catholic schools to bone up their numbers when they rally.

    Until that changes and the GOP (and wimp Dems) start feeling the pain at the ballot box, the chip chip chipping away of freedom will continue.

    •  That is why Liberals need to start having (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dillonfence, Neon Mama

      coming of age birth control parties for their children celebrating reproductive control and the knowledge of it.  No young person should be without a solid reproductive plan before becoming sexually active.
      All options and means need to be discussed and a plan be made for each person.

    •  I wonder deeply about the psychology of these (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      people.  What is it that gets them so emotionally invested in fetuses?  I know they scream about "murder" and all, but we all know it's not some deep concern with "life" or they'd be deeply concerned about a lot more important things than abortion.  So what drives them?  It's the same with the hate for gays.  There are so many people that are actually deserving of hate.  Yet they reserve the deepest for people they're not affected by in any way.

      There's got to be some reasonable explanation for this, since it affects so many people in this country.  I've yet to see anything that begins to explain it, though.

      "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

      by gustynpip on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 09:17:04 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I get it, but its the failure to be consistent... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        that I too don't understand.

        The "pro life" community are often the first ones to unify behind haphazard efforts to bomb the shit out of children, mothers,  and pregnant women abroad. They don't march against torture, or demand an end to the death penalty or demand food for malnourished children or aid for the children of addicts. Its as if they are only concerned for the fetus until it is born and draws its first breath and then it gets a big "fuck you" from the pro life community. Its insane.

        •  Exactly. Most of them exhibit not an iota of (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          concern for those already born, but will go to incredible lengths and make great sacrifices to try and prevent a woman from aborting a nonviable fetus.  I believe many of them are truly anguished over the idea of a woman having an abortion, yet can see malnourished children and their only response is that their parents are bad parents.  I just cant figure out the pathology there.  There's got to be some kind of underlying explanation, but I can't for the life of me figure anything out.

          "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

          by gustynpip on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 03:04:29 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  20 weeks (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mungley, mconvente, MsPlasmodesmata

    Most people aren't medical researchers or abortion warriors on either side; they just believe 20 weeks should be enough time to figure out you are pregnant, consider all your options and make a decision. Yes, I'm sure they also believe that if there is a medical reason to have an abortion after this time it should be allowed but off the top of their heads 5x4=20 weeks and that sounds reasonable.

  •  My biggest fear from that poll (9+ / 0-)

    They broke it down into people who view abortion as a "major" issue vs. those who consider it not so big a deal.

    And the results?

    Those who rate abortion as a major issue are 70-30 in favor of making abortion illegal.

    Those that rated abortion as a minor isssue - ~65-35 in favor of keeping abortion legal.

    There's your problem.  

    Same thing goes for women's rights, as we're seeing in teabaggerstan states.  People assumed that these issues were settled back in the 60s and 70s, but clearly they are not.  Progressives were caught way off guard with Republican attempts (and successes) at chipping away at hard earned rights.

    We have to be even more vigilant on this issue.  Thankfully, my generation (Millenials) are overwhelmingly on the right side of things, but we can grow older only so fast.

    "Give me a lever long enough... and I shall move the world." - Archimedes

    by mconvente on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 08:35:23 AM PDT

  •  I'd chalk some of that up to confusion. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mconvente, MsPlasmodesmata, gustynpip

    Also, unless the pollster gave information about fetal development at 20 weeks and 24 weeks, then people were likely just guessing.

    I ain't often right, but I've never been wrong. Seldom turns out the way it does in this song.

    by mungley on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 08:37:28 AM PDT

    •  The ignorance of our own bodies is pathetic. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Neon Mama, mungley

      I is the willful turning away of knowledge because it is culturally distasteful to talk about reproduction.  This is what we need to change.

      •  Agreed. I've had conversations here where (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        the subject of safe sex, and contraception seems to be an issue for fellow progressives in their personal relationships.

        No talking about reproduction sure can lead to unintended pregnancy.

        I ain't often right, but I've never been wrong. Seldom turns out the way it does in this song.

        by mungley on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 11:48:11 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  The pollsters and the media need to give context (11+ / 0-)

    The 20-week ban sounds nice.  It falls under what people would call "common sense" even though it's not sensible in the slightest.

    For instance, when I discussed this with my mom last month, she at first supported the idea of a 20-week ban.  Then I noted that it would mean that a woman could be forced to carry a braindead fetus to term.  She hadn't thought of such problems and conceded that I was right, and she now agrees with me.

    Abortions after 20 weeks are very rare--only about 1% of all abortions (  The media, in my opinion, is to fault for the broad lack of public understanding on this issue because they never note the rarity of such procedures or the reasons why a woman might have to get an abortion after 20 weeks.  And, as always, Republicans capitalize on ignorance.

  •  Huh (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jan4insight, qofdisks

    Somewhat surprising is that a large-ish minority of Republicans are pro-choice.  Nearly 40%!  

  •  What was the original rationale for 24 weeks? (0+ / 0-)

    As I recall, it was viability of the child:

    The state can impose more restrictions on the abortion of viable children, and viability is generally taken to be 24 weeks.

    For all of the advances since then, I think 24 weeks is the point at which a delivered child has a better than 50% chance of survival.  20 weeks? That would take a miracle.

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 08:42:17 AM PDT

  •  This issue (0+ / 0-)

    This issue, to me, seems to have been decided for some time now.  Anytime there's a poll on the issue there's quite a good bit of people (in the 50% and up range) who want to keep things as they are.  Only the extreme right wingers want to change things and this is how they're doing it. They love to talk about "forcing" things "down their throat" where it's issues like the Affordable Care Act but it's with medical issues with females they have no problem being hypocrites about it.

  •  The poll agrees with most European laws. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    When not politicized, many democratic countries have legislated abortion as available without restriction in the first trimester and then subject to restrictions, such as the necessity to the life and health of the mother, afterwards.  This is not "incoherent" or "squeamish." It is a recognition, "common sense" if you will, that at some point, the fetus is a human being that should not be destroyed without good reason.

    Had not the neocons, in their formulation of the U.S. "Religious Right," decided to use abortion for political gain, I think the U.S. would have come to some similar determination as have other people of good will.

    Unless progressives can come to respect the generally universal opinion of the body politic found in other democracies, we will appear as dogmatic as the right.

    •  Late term abortions are done for good reason (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      a2nite, Brooke In Seattle

      and they are statistically rare.  It is dogmatic the force women to bring a "bad" pregnancy to term.
      The human being of the fetus should be a matter of respect and honor but, the woman has to choose whether the fetus live or dies all the way up to term.  Pregnancy and gestation can go terribly wrong at any time.

  •  Of course the finding are completely incoherent (3+ / 0-)

    This is what happens when average people with no formal education in the life sciences starts rendering opinions on subjects like this one when they have no clue about what they've been asked. Just remember almost half of the population doesn't seem to know that it takes a year for the Earth to do one orbit around the Sun. Tha's what we're dealing with.

    Just another day in Oceania.

    by drshatterhand on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 08:48:18 AM PDT

    •  Science may never satisfactorily answer the (0+ / 0-)

      question of when does life begin. In the Roe v. Wade decision, the opinions of many other societies and cultures were referenced and weighed - none of which were based on science. Therefore, even those ignorant of science can form a valid and worthy of respect opinion on this matter.

      •  That is why the whole argument of when or if (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Neon Mama, Brooke In Seattle

        "life" should be abandoned altogether by the pro-choice movement.
        It doesn't matter, it is irrelevant is is the the woman's choice whether it is regarded as a human being or not.  That is the feminine power of choice.
        I know it seems harsh but, reproduction in nature is harsh and we are not above nature as we are natural beings.

      •  How far do we extend that reasoning though? (0+ / 0-)

        First off, who decides what constitutes a "satisfactory" answer?

        Secondly, by this logic, one could just as easily argue that opinions like creationism and intelligent design are valid and worthy of respect since science may never "satisfactorily" answer all the questions about evolution.

        I could say "Science may never satisfactorily answer the question of how much of global warming is man-made" (I don't believe this statement, but that doesn't mean I can't make the argument).  Does that mean, then, that global warming deniers should be considered valid and worthy of respect?

        This is a biological, and therefore, ultimately, a scientific issue.

        •  I"ll disagree here (0+ / 0-)

          I think natural selection, evolution, and global warming are all scientific questions.  Sure, there might be remote and specific questions that outstrip our ability to do good research, but those kinds of questions have answers, we're just doing our best to discover them.

           "When does a human life begin?" isn't a scientific question at all.  There's no answer to it that means anything, and no degree of research that would help.  Conception, viability, birth: none of those are based on any facts, they're philosophical questions.  You can answer "when is a fetus able to survive independently" or "when does a heart beat" but they don't amount to "the beginning of life."  

          •  Not exactly. (0+ / 0-)

            Biologists have a pretty uniform definition of what "life" is, and I don't know of many scientists who would argue that life begins at conception.  

            Life is a scientific question.  Personhood, on the other hand, is not.

    •  You know, I just watched (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Neon Mama

      Idiocracy for the first time the other day.  While I enjoyed it, and it's quite funny, some of it hit quite close to home, as far as where our country seems to be heading sometimes.

  •  State laws trump the US Constitution? (4+ / 0-)

    The 30% who believe this are the same people who are always claiming to be strict Constitutionalists, and screaming that everything is unConstitutional.

    The problem with political jokes is they get elected.

    by shoeless on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 08:51:24 AM PDT

    •  Exactly. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      qofdisks, Neon Mama, shoeless

      States vs. the Constitution is a false choice, and the question makes no sense.

      States may not pass laws that violate the US Constitution, try as they might.

      The most violent element in society is ignorance.

      by Mr MadAsHell on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 08:58:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Well, constitutionality is at the whim of the (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Supreme Court isn't it?  Regardless of man made law, women have always and always will have the feminine power to choose life or death fro their offspring.  The question is will choosing to terminate a pregnancy be safe or not?  Will choosing to terminate a pregnancy be criminalized?
        Illegal abortion, like the Drug War, would be unjust and unenforceable causing untold human misery.

    •  It's gotten to the point (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      where any time I hear someone call themselves a Constitutionalist, I just assume they don't know what's actually in the Constitution.  I generally don't hear people who have more than a passing familiarity with it call themselves that.

    •  Yeah (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Silly as that is, I assume the question meant to ask something like "Would you support a Constitutional amendment giving the states the power to regulate abortion in any and all circumstances, notwithstanding any other aspect of the Constitution?" or something to that affect.

      That would, of course, allow an ex post facto abortion law, but I bet they'd love it.

  •  Abortion (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Brooke In Seattle

    Pro-choice, as defined by Roe v Wade IS the moderate position.  Abortion is legal, it is not mandatory.  Anyone who is opposed for whatever reason is not forced to have an abortion.  Hell, due to the Hyde Amendment (may it be the 1st thing repealed after the revolution) the antis don't even have to trouble their consciences about 'paying' for abortion.

  •  to me it's simply how the question is phrased (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Be Skeptical

    Most people, unfortunately, have not read Roe.  They don't know that it sets the time at 24 weeks.  So, if you ask them do you want to keep the same time limits as in Roe, you'd get a different answer. If you told them Roe sets it at 24 weeks, most would I think accept 24 weeks.  Educate them.  So much b.s. is put out there as fact in the abortion debate by the other side. Knowledge is power.  

  •  TX laws are more than about 20 week abortions (0+ / 0-)

    The biggest problem with the TX besides banning abortions after 20 weeks, is the unnecessary building restrictions put on ALL clinics that performing abortions. The professional medical experts were opposed to this law saying it was unnecessary for woman's  safely.

    This means Planned Parenthood clinics which do not perform abortions after 13 weeks would also have to meet the buildlng restrictions too, and thus forcing them to close. Closing PP clinics would also mean that those would who went to PP for basic health care would not have access to basic health care or affordable contraception which reduces the need for abortion.

    •  Abortions will happen either way (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Brooke In Seattle, jayden

      There's no way around it. Even if American women were flooded with effective, affordable birth control methods (which is the exact opposite of what's happening here) there would still be a need for abortion, because women have sexual needs that occasionally override their better judgement, and women who find themselves pregnant when they don't want to be are known to do extremely dangerous things to themselves, or allow others to do extremely dangerous things to them, to try to make it stop. This didn't suddenly come about in 1973 when Roe v. Wade came down. These are well-documented realities of human female sexuality.

      I'll repeat that. Women who are pregnant and don't want to be will do extremely desperate things to get unpregnant. It doesn't matter how many pictures of gory fetuses or cuddly babies you show them. You can call them whores or threaten them with jail or the electric chair or hell. It doesn't matter. They will find a way to abort. This is a reality that nobody seems to be facing. We are going to see a lot of death because of these bans on legal abortion. The consequences of our fear and hatred of female sexuality will be horrifying, gruesome and tragic.

  •  People have no idea what's going to happen (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Brooke In Seattle

    Forty years of well-funded antiabortion propaganda plus forty years of access to legal abortion mean the majority of Americans have a very warped, unrealistic idea of the issues involved. Most people if you asked them would tell you that women simply didn't get abortions before Roe v. Wade and that pregnancy and childbirth are natural and safe and never killed anybody.

  •  Roe already violates religious belief of (0+ / 0-)

    Orthodox Judaism which denies personhood until first breath.  Fetus must not "pursue" life of woman --- and that includes respecting her mental health needs.  Gimme some of THAT old time religion.  

    Adam was a clump of clay until deity breathed "soul" in with first breath.  

    Plus, first male twin to get head out and breathe wins "birthright" of inheriting all dad's stuff.  Most marriage "contracts" were all about women as property.

    Abortion in Temple is prescribed in detail -- based on the slim excuse that the husband suspects fetus is not his spawn.  Guilty wife gets dead fetus and becomes sterile --- the bible tells me so.    Men had concubines, slaves, and multiple wives -- but must not be forced to pay for or tolerate her womb being used for fetus planted by another man.

    Ladies, we aren't free until we OWN our womb and can evict unwanted fetus.  Bodily integrity.  Habeus Corpus.  The same logic which says a govt. can force birth -- would allow govt. to force abortion and/or harvest of bodily organs.  

    Last I heard, average cost per child rearing is half a million bucks.   Can we really afford unwanted people who we don't even have jobs for and can't afford to educate or keep healthy?    If they really want to "cut spending", then cut childbirths and warmongering.

    De fund + de bunk = de EXIT--->>>>>

    by Neon Mama on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 12:11:44 PM PDT

  •  It is important to remember this. (0+ / 0-)

    Pro-choice vs. anti-choice is not a black-and-white issue. Some people vary in the degree to which they are pro-choice.

    We have to get back to the drawing board on the pro-choice movement. Though the blame does not lie with us, we can certainly do what we can to swing the tides.

  •  Most people (0+ / 0-)

    probably don't know the difference between 20 and 24 weeks, if the poll changed the question to 24 weeks the results would be the same.

  •  A majority of people (0+ / 0-)

    voted for Al Gore (and probably John Kerry as well) to be President, and that didn't happen.  And a majority of people voted for Democrats to be their representatives in Congress, yet we got a Republican-dominated House.

    Are we really sure we live in a Democracy?

    I want my government to be big enough to drown Grover Norquist in a bathtub.

    by sercanet on Thu Jul 25, 2013 at 03:09:34 PM PDT

  •  Not incoherent (0+ / 0-)

    Regardless of what side of this issue someone is on, neither science nor the law are going to sway them to the other side.
    The Right gets traction on the 20 week issue because 20 weeks is the standard check up where people see their babies for the first time and they couldn't image aborting them at that stage.
    There are a lot of people out there who support the right to choose and are still very uncomfortable with abortions and I imagine there are right to lifers that concede there are circumstances where abortions should remain legal. For those people the lack of any middle ground in this fight keeps them from being full throated supporters of either side.

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