John Fugelsang’s take below the fold.
FUGELSANG: This number set off a wave of celebration in the anti-abortion rights community this week and it’s our number of the day: 41. That’s the percentage of Americans who, according to the new Gallup poll, identify themselves as pro-choice. It’s a record low and the Washington Post even ran an op-ed saying this proves Americans are becoming more pro-life.
However, upon closer inspection, it’s apparent that this is not a story about numbers. It’s a story about words, because in spite of this record low number, the same poll also reveals that only 20 percent of Americans favor abortion being illegal in all cases. 25 percent of Americans support abortion rights in all cases. And 52 percent, and this number includes many of our conservative brothers and sisters, 52 percent support abortion rights in some cases.
Now, I’m not too great at math. I went to one of those U.S. public schools that Gov. Romney calls third world, but 25 and 52 add up to 77 percent of Americans who support the right to an abortion in some or all cases. So even though many older and religious voters would never, ever terminate a pregnancy, they still support women having the right to their own reproductive freedom.
It’s a clear majority. They just don’t choose to identify themselves as pro-choice. Which when you think about it, is what choice is all about. And that’s why it’s a story about language. Just as many pro-choice people reject the term pro-abortion. But wherever you stand on this morally complex issue, two things are clear.
One, America does not have an abortion problem. It has an unwanted pregnancy problem; abortion is a symptom. And two, only here in America can you be pro-death penalty, pro-torture, pro-euthanasia, pro-drone bomb, pro-land mine, pro-preemptive war and still call yourself pro-life.