South Dakota Voters Leaning Against Abortion Ban on November Ballot

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jul 31, 2006   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

South Dakota Voters Leaning Against Abortion Ban on November Ballot Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
July 31, 2006

Pierre, SD ( — A new poll of South Dakota voters finds just a small plurality of voters are against the statewide abortion ban that will appear on November’s ballot. Planned Parenthood, which operates the state’s only abortion business, took the ban to the ballot before trying to overturn it in court.

The statewide survey found 47 percent of voters oppose the ban, 39 percent favor it and 14 percent are undecided.

The poll has a margin of error of 3.5 percent and shows the abortion ban will be a closely contest battle this fall.

The ban prohibits all abortions except in cases when necessary to save the life of the mother and, in those cases, the person doing the abortion is instructed to do everything possible to save the life of the mother.

The survey also asked voters how they would vote if the ban had included rape and incest exceptions.

Under that scenario, 59 percent said they would vote for the ban, 29 percent would vote against the abortion ban and 12 percent were unsure how they would vote.

Mason-Dixon Polling & Research conducted the survey of 800 registered voters July 24-26 for KELO-TV and the SIoux Falls Argus Leader newspaper.

Hundreds of pro-life advocates across the state of South Dakota attended rallies earlier this month to support the abortion ban.

Aberdeen attorney Rory King was one of the speakers at the event, sponsored by Vote Yes For Life, which is leading the campaign to defend the ban.

King said the abortion ban was helpful to show the rest of the nation that abortion kills babies and hurts women and should be stopped.

Dr. David Wachs of Aberdeen agreed and, according to an American News report, told the audience that scientific advancement have been able to show the wonderful development of the baby before birth. While the Supreme Court ruled that it couldn’t determine when life began in its 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling, Wachs said there is no question about it now.

The audience also heard from three South Dakota women who had unexpected pregnancies and chose not to have abortions.

Molly Hanson, a Pierre High School graduate and a sophomore nursing student at Augustana College in Sioux Falls, told the audience that women need to be given abortion alternatives more often.

Leslie Unruh, the campaign director for Vote Yes For Life, also talked to the crowd. According to the AN report, she spoke of her own abortion and how she regrets the decision.

"I carry an empty crib in my heart," Unruh said. "Abortion affects a whole lot of people. It’s not a healthy alternative for families. It wasn’t a healthy choice for me."

If Planned Parenthood loses at the polls, the pro-abortion group can still take the abortion ban to court and file a lawsuit seeking to prevent it from being enforced.

Related web sites:
South Dakotans for 1215 –