Pro-life Politicians Armed with New Pro-Woman Facts and Arguments
Resource Kit Includes Poll Results, Coerced Abortions Report, and Solid Answers to Hard Questions
Springfield, IL (Aug 23, 2004) — A recent nationally representative opinion poll (+/- 4 percentage points) has found that 86 percent of American adults believe significant emotional problems after an abortion are common or very common. Only 16 percent of those polled believed that abortion generally makes women’s lives better. About half stated that it is common or very common for women to feel pressured into unwanted abortions.
The poll was commissioned by the Elliot Institute, which specializes in medical research and public education regarding abortion’s impact on women. Results from the poll are included in the Political Resource Kit that the Elliot Institute has developed to help candidates and elected officials to address this emerging political issue.
According to the poll data, gender had nearly as much effect on beliefs as did political views about abortion. Overall, men were significantly more likely than women to believe abortion made women’s lives better. The gender gap was most pronounced among pro-choice respondents, with pro-choice men 43 percent more likely than pro-choice women to believe that abortion makes women’s lives better.
Overall, approximately 80 percent of respondents stated that research on post-abortion complications should be a moderate to high priority. Three out of four believed that efforts to provide alternatives to abortion and support for those who suffer post-abortion problems should be a political priority.
“Politicians who ignore the issue of post-abortion complications are ignoring an important concern of the American people, especially of the 30 million women who have had abortions,” said David Reardon, Ph.D., the director of the Elliot Institute.
Reardon cited poll results showing that 52 percent of respondents said they would be more likely to vote for a political candidate who calls for government support for post-abortion grief counseling programs. This position was especially attractive to pro-choice women, with 63 percent reporting that they would be more likely to vote for such a candidate, compared to only 46 percent of pro-choice men. Only 26 percent overall said they would be less likely to support such a candidate.
The poll also revealed relatively high awareness of the problem of coerced abortions. Even though the problem of women being pressured into unwanted abortions has not received significant media coverage, 80 percent of those polled believed coerced abortions are not uncommon, with nearly one in five stating that the problem was “very common.”
The Elliot Institute’s newly released Political Resource Kit provides extensive background material on the problem of coerced abortions, and the related problem of violence and homicide perpetrated against women who resist unwanted abortions.
The Elliot Institute is urging public leaders, political candidates, and grassroots activists to download the kit free of charge.
“These materials will help candidates win strong support from millions of voters often overlooked by both sides of the abortion issue,” said Reardon. “Americans know that abortion hurts women and that coerced abortions are far too common. The vast majority want political leaders who will help women to avoid abortions if possible and to help those who are suffering from past abortions to receive compassionate care.”
Reardon is also urging concerned citizens to copy and distribute the fact sheets and other materials contained in the kit to their political representatives and candidates. “Most politicians, on both sides of the abortion debate, are still stuck on the old arguments and clichés that define the abortion debate as a conflict between the rights of women and the rights of unborn children,” said Reardon. “These materials will help them move on to the next level of debate, which acknowledges that many abortions involve coercion, which violates mothers’ rights and generally causes more harm than good.
“Our poll shows that Americans on both sides of the debate overwhelmingly support efforts to eliminate unwanted and harmful abortions. Most know that the welfare of women and their children are intertwined; hurting one hurts both. Women deserve better options than abortion, but they won’t get better options until the problem of unwanted abortions becomes a higher-profile issue among politicians. Thirty million women already know the truth. Now they’re waiting for politicians to understand their real needs and problems. That’s why we’re distributing this free information kit.”
More information, including this news release, can be found at www.afterabortion.org/news.
Persons who want to encourage politicians to employ a pro-woman/pro-life approach to the abortion issue are encouraged to read and sign the petition to both major political parties at www.afterabortion.org/petition.
Please forward this notice to others.