They also found that the majority of Texas voters would support restrictions on abortion that are greater than those we have today.
The University of Texas and the Texas Tribune have published the results of a poll that included questions about voters’ opinions on abortion. The poll of registered voters in Texas, recruited by an organization called “YouPoll.”
Q37. What is your opinion on the availability of abortion?
1. By law, abortion should never be permitted. 16%
2. The law should permit abortion only in case of
rape, incest or when the woman’s life is in danger. 30
3. The law should permit abortion for reasons other than rape, incest, or danger to the woman’s life, but only after the need for the abortion has been clearly established. 13
4. By law, a woman should always be able to obtain
an abortion as a matter of personal choice. 36
5. Don’t know 5
Q38. Do you think that laws restricting abortion here in Texas should be made more strict, less strict, or left as they are now?
1. More strict 38%
2. Less strict 26
3. Left as they are now 21
4. Don’t know/no opinion 14
By answering “3. The law should permit abortion for reasons other than rape, incest, or danger to the woman’s life, but only after the need for the abortion has been clearly established,” the respondents would actually support laws that are much more restrictive than current law. However, it’s being reported as though current law requires a need to be established, and to match the answers in Q38.
2/3 of those polled support for a ban on abortion after 20 weeks, whether or not the abortion causes pain to the fetus. The poll asked half of those polled one question and half another, with very similar results:
C. [SPLIT SAMPLE a AND b]
a. Prohibiting abortions after 20 weeks based on the argument that a fetus can feel pain at that point.
- Strongly support 49%
- Somewhat support 13
- Somewhat oppose 8
- Strongly oppose 19
- Don’t know 11
b. Prohibiting abortions after 20 weeks.
1. Strongly support 47%
2. Somewhat support 15
3. Somewhat oppose 8
4. Strongly oppose 22
5. Don’t know 9
Rather than reflecting people’s knowledge that 20 weeks – or 5 months – is very close to our current viability of 22-23 weeks, I believe that the responses reflect our conflicted and complicated feelings about abortion in general.