by Steven Ertelt
April 3, 2006
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — A new Gallup analysis of the polls it has taken on abortion in the last two years finds Christians and churchgoers in the U.S. are more likely to take a pro-life position on abortion while non-Christians are more likely to support legalized abortion.
The findings also show churchgoing Republicans and Democrats are more likely to be pro-life than those who attend church less frequently.
The Gallup poll typically asks Americans if they think abortion should be legal under any circumstances, illegal under any circumstances, or only legal in certain circumstances. In their analysis about religious views and its affect on abortion stances, Gallup relied on the always illegal or always legal categories.
Gallup concluded that there is a "stark difference in views on abortion between Americans who are Christians and those who are not Christians."
While just 20% of Christians say abortion should be legal under any circumstances, a majority of non-Christians (54%) and a large segment of those with no religious preference (39%) agree.
The Gallup surveys also showed that evangelical and "other" Christians, such as Mormons or Greek Orthodox, were much more likely to say abortion should always be illegal than Catholics or Christians in mainline Protestant denominations like Presbyterians or Methodists.
Another clear contrast is found when comparing Christians who are weekly churchgoers with those who attend church less frequently or not at all.
Those who attend church on a weekly basis are overwhelmingly more pro-life, those who attend almost weekly are split, while those who attend just once a month or seldom attend are much more likely to favor unlimited abortion.
"Thus, while the broad type of Christian religion to which one adheres does not seem to affect one’s attitude toward abortion, the intensity with which one practices that religion does," Gallup concluded.
Gallup found that Republicans are more likely to be pro-life than Democrats, but that it has a lot to do with the fact that Republicans are more likely to attend church on a regular basis.
Half of Republicans, 51%, attend religious services weekly or nearly weekly, compared with 37% of Democrats.
But Gallup found, again, that church attendance had a significant impact on abortion views.
Even Democrats who attend church on an every week basis were much more likely to oppose abortion, although to a lesser degree than Republicans who attend church weekly. Democrats who seldom attended church were overwhelmingly pro-abortion and to a much greater degree than Republicans who infrequently attend church services.
The Gallup analysis is based on four abortion polls it conducted at various times from May 2004 through June 2005.