Faith

Democrats Out of Touch on Abortion

Americans and Dems far apart on this issue; Hillary should heed results of new study

It’s no secret Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has become increasingly radical on abortion during this election cycle — even going so far as to throw her support behind partial-birth abortion.

Her vice presidential pick, Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia, is a Catholic and maintains a personal pro-life view, but staunchly supports the procedure when it comes to what matters: legislation.

“The American people have spoken clearly on their desire for abortion restrictions, less taxpayer funding of it, and commonsense regulations on this industry to protect women’s health.”

“While Sen. Kaine has been open about his personal reservations about abortion, he’s maintained a 100 percent pro-choice voting record in the U.S. Senate,” the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws (NARAL), a notoriously pro-choice group, said of Kaine in a statement. “When he was governor, Tim Kaine took positions we disagreed with and actively campaigned against. We’re pleased that since then, his votes and public statements have been consistently in favor of trusting women to make our own decisions.”

But a new survey out Monday by the Marist Institute for Public Opinion and sponsored by The Knights of Columbus found differently: It found that public opinion might be swaying away from the Democrats on the issue of abortion.

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The study found that 78 percent of Americans support restrictions when it comes to the abortion issue — specifically limiting it to the first three months of pregnancy. Of that group, 62 percent are pro-choice. Although 51 percent define themselves as technically pro-choice, the idea of having few or no restrictions on abortion is not at all supported by the general public.

When it comes to the most recent Supreme Court decision on abortion, 78 percent of Americans disagree with the court’s ruling in that Texas case — in which, by a 5-3 vote, it struck down a law requiring abortion clinics to adhere to medical safety norms. Those Americans believe that abortion clinics should be held to the standards of outpatient surgery centers.

Related: Clinton Moves Further Left on Abortion

When it comes to the issue of safety and the best care for women, many agree the restrictions are necessary. Seventy percent of Americans approve of requiring the doctors who are performing abortions to have hospital admitting privileges. “This includes 71 percent of women, 77 percent of millennials, and 78 percent of Latinos,” the study found. “Pro-life and pro-choice adherents are also equally likely to support such a requirement.”

“Our courts, politicians, candidates, and parties should heed this consensus.”

Funding abortion with taxpayer dollars is opposed by 62 percent of Americans, according to the study. And of those who oppose taxpayers funding abortion, 84 percent are Republicans, 61 percent are independents, and 44 percent are Democrats.

Lastly, 56 percent of Americans agree health care providers shouldn’t be required to perform abortions when it is against their religious beliefs or conscience.

“The American people have spoken clearly on their desire for abortion restrictions, less taxpayer funding of it, and common sense regulations on this industry to protect women’s health,” said Knights of Columbus CEO Carl Anderson on the findings of the study. “Our courts, politicians, candidates, and parties should heed this consensus.”

“The majority of Americans in favor of abortion restrictions has been consistently around eight in 10 for the better part of a decade,” said the director of the Marist Poll, Barbara Carvalho. “Though self-identification as pro-life or pro-choice can vary substantially from year to year, the support for restrictions is quite stable.”

As the Democratic National Convention starts, Hillary Clinton would be wise to heed the findings of this study — and realize that the Democrats might just be a little out of touch with the beliefs of most Americans when it comes to abortion.

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