Pro-Abortion Republican Activist Blames McCain Loss on Pro-Life Advocates

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 10, 2008   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Pro-Abortion Republican Activist Blames McCain Loss on Pro-Life Advocates

by Steven Ertelt Editor
December 10
, 2008

Washington, DC ( — A leading pro-abortion Republican activist is blaming John McCain’s loss to pro-abortion presidential candidate Barack Obama on pro-life advocates. Jennifer Blei Stockman, the head of the Republican Majority for Choice, makes the claim in a letter to the New York Times.

Stockman blames the election loss on the "inflexibility of social fundamentalist leaders."

She claims most Americans are not pro-life and that "the inability of the party and the McCain-Palin campaign to acknowledge that the GOP and the country have changed since the 2000 and 2004 elections contributed significantly to the party’s loss."

Stockman’s claims don’t have much validity when held up against factual polling data.

In the 2004 presidential election, John Kerry lost to President Bush in 2004 in part because of his pro-abortion views.

A 2004 Wirthlin Worldwide post-election poll found that 42 percent of voters said abortion affected the way they voted for president. Twenty-four percent of voters cast their ballots for President Bush while 15% voted for Kerry, giving Bush a 9 percent advantage on the issue of abortion.

Eight percent of voters in the Wirthlin poll indicated abortion was the "most important" issue affecting their votes and Bush won among those voters by a six to two percent margin, leading Kerry by four percentage points among the most intense abortion voters.

A Marist College poll conducted in October finds not much has changed since then.

Some 60 percent of Americans take a pro-life position and say abortions should never be allowed or only in the rarest of circumstances, such as rape and incest, that constitute less than two percent of all abortions nationwide.

Just 40 percent took one of three pro-abortion positions and only 8 percent agreed with Barack Obama’s position that abortions should be allowed any time during pregnancy for any reason.

In her letter, Stockman also held up a poll her group conducted that falsely gives the impression most Republicans are pro-abortion.

"According to a poll conducted last August by Republican Majority for Choice, 78 percent of Republicans say the issue of abortion should be decided by a woman, not the government," she claimed.

"An overwhelming 66 percent of self-described ‘pro-life’ voters believe abortion should be decided by a woman," she added.

But that’s far from what actual Republican voters said when they participated in exit polls following the Republican presidential primaries earlier this year.

More than three-fourths of all Republicans in Missouri (74-23 percent), Tennessee (75-22), Alabama (76-20), Oklahoma (76-22) and Arkansas (81-18) say they want all or most abortions illegal and take a pro-life position.

But a majority of Republicans in other states are also pro-life.

Some 64 percent of Republicans in Illinois said they want all or most abortions illegal while just 33 percent want all or most to remain legal. Golden State Republicans take a pro-life position by a 54 to 42 percentage point margin. And some 70 percent of Ohio Republicans take a pro-life position saying abortion should be illegal while just 28 percent support legalized abortion.

In Arizona, 58 percent of Republicans take a pro-life position compared to just 37 percent who don’t while Utah Republicans were even more strongly pro-life with a 85-13 percentage point split.

The only part of the country where a majority of Republicans are pro-abortion is the northeast, including Stockman’s home state of Connecticut.

Exit Polling Shows Most States With
Pro-Life Republican Majorities

State Pro-Life v. Pro-Abortion Always Illegal Mostly Illegal Mostly Legal Always Legal Alabama 76-20% 32% 44% 15% 5% Arizona 58-37% 17% 42% 25% 13% Arkansas 80-18% 37% 43% 13% 6% California 54-42% 19% 35% 28% 14% Connecticut 46-50% 13% 33% 30% 20% Florida 54-44% 18% 35% 30% 14% Georgia 64-33% 25% 39% 24% 9% Illinois 64-33% 26% 38% 23% 10% Iowa 74-23% 25% 49% 16% 7% Louisiana 75-22% 38% 37% 15% 7% Maryland 56-42% 17% 39% 28% 14% Massachusetts 41-56% 13% 28% 37% 19% Missouri 74-23% 32% 43% 18% 6% New Hampshire 45-52% 15% 30% 32% 20% New Jersey 46-53% 16% 29% 34% 19% New York 48-49% 14% 34% 28% 21% Ohio 70-28% 27% 43% 22% 6% Oklahoma 76-22% 27% 49% 17% 6% South Carolina 71-28% 28% 43% 19% 9% Tennessee 75-22% 33% 42% 15% 7% Texas 68-29% 25% 44% 22% 7% Utah 85-13% 10% 75% 10% 3% Virginia 63-34% 25% 38% 25% 9% Wisconsin 74-25% 27% 47% 16% 9%

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