Pro-Abortion Group’s Internal Research Shows Pro-Life Youth More Passionate

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Apr 19, 2010   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Pro-Abortion Group’s Internal Research Shows Pro-Life Youth More Passionate

by Steven Ertelt Editor
April 19
, 2010

Washington, DC ( — A prominent pro-abortion group is concerned about the future of legal abortions and, surprisingly, released the results of an internal poll it conducted to Newsweek demonstrating the problems. The bad news for NARAL is that its own survey found young Americans more passionate about pro-life views than abortion.

The NARAL survey, conducted earlier this year, examined the views of young Americans and found a stark "intensity gap" on abortion.

Some 51 percent of the under 30 voters who are pro-life call opposing abortion a "very important" voting issue compared with just 26 percent of abortion backers.

The poll found a pro-life gap, too, with older voters but it was smaller.

For NARAL president Nancy Keenan, that is a huge problem.

Keenan talked about the emerging pro-life generation with Newsweek and said her concern is that abortion advocates are dominated by women over the age of 50 and that younger generations aren’t filling the ranks of pro-abortion groups the same way young pro-life advocates are getting involved in the pro-life community.

Anecdotally, Keenan related the story of getting off her train in Washington during the weekend March for Life, which saw 400,000 pro-life advocates fill the nation’s capitol to rally against abortion.

She saw huge numbers of teenagers and young adults that she doesn’t typically see at pro-abortion rallies.

"I just thought, my gosh, they are so young," Keenan recalled. "There are so many of them, and they are so young."

The NARAL survey Newsweek obtained also showed the millennials surveyed did not view abortion as an important right that needed defending.

However, it contained an important nuance that pro-life advocates must confront as they move to build a consensus towards protecting unborn children by law.

"Millennials are more likely than their boomer parents to see abortion as a moral issue. In the NARAL focus groups, young voters flat-out disapproved of a woman’s abortion, called her actions immoral, yet maintained that the government had absolutely no right to intervene," Newsweek indicated.

That means the next generation of Americans business, government and society leaders generally oppose abortion but are unwilling to make abortions illegal. The pro-life movement must work to shift the culture towards protecting unborn children under law if it is to seize on the pro-life open-mindedness of the next generation.

To that end, the pro-life movement has successfully utilized ultrasounds to shift public opinion — something former NARAL president Kate Michelman acknowledged in her own interview with Newsweek.

"The technology has clearly helped to define how people think about a fetus as a full, breathing human being," she said. "The other side has been able to use the technology to its own end."

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