Gallup Poll: Support Dropping for Abortion, Cloning, Embryonic Stem Cell Research
by Steven Ertelt
May 22, 2009
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — As part of a new national poll that showed support for abortion at its lowest level in 15 years, the recent Gallup survey also examined where Americans stand on other moral issues such as human cloning and embryonic stem cell research. The poll found support for those practices lowering as well.
The Gallup survey asked Americans to determine whether they thought more than a dozen practices such as divorce, the death penalty and suicide were morally alright or morally wrong.
Out of 15 practices, embryonic stem cell research was the fifth most morally okay, according to Americans polled, with 57 percent saying it is morally acceptable and 36 percent saying it is morally wrong.
Abortion was only the 10th most morally okay practice for those polled with only 36 percent saying it is morally okay and 56 percent saying it is morally wrong.
And human cloning came in as the 13th most morally okay practice with a strong 88 percent saying it is morally wrong and just nine percent supporting it.
On all three practices which pro-life advocates oppose, the Gallup poll showed movement in the pro-life direction.
Comparing the latest results to its May 2008 national poll, support for embryonic stem cell research has dropped from 62 to 57 percent, support for abortion has dropped from 40 to 36 percent, and support for human cloning has dropped from 11 to 9 percent.
Gallup indicates that Republicans’ views have shifted in the pro-life direction and been responsible for the shift in attitudes on these moral issues.
"Most of the uptick in support for conservative positions over the past year is the result of Republicans (including independents who lean Republican) moving to the political right in their views. There have been no significant increases in conservative views among Democrats (including Democratic-leaning independents)," the polling firm indicates.
Over the past year, the percentage of Republicans saying embryonic stem cell research is morally acceptable fell by nine points, from 50% to 41% — a new low for Republicans on this issue since Gallup began measuring it in 2002.
At the same time, acceptance among Democrats has held steady at 74%.
The same partisan divide on abortion is seen in the new Gallup survey, with 52 percent of Democrats saying abortion is morally acceptable and just 23 percent of Republicans saying so.
While the percentage has stayed the same for Democratic voters over the years, the support for abortion among Republicans continues to drop.
The results of the Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews with 1,015 national adults, aged 18 and older, conducted May 7-10, 2009 and it has a 3.5 percent margin of error.
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