According to new data released by the Pew Research Center, 69 percent of Americans say they’re opposed to overturning Roe v. Wade—the landmark Supreme Court decision that gives women the right to an abortion nationwide.
In debates before the election, and more recently, during an early interview with 60 Minutes, President-elect Donald Trump said he plans to appoint pro-life justices to the Supreme Court, who would likely vote to overturn Roe v. Wade and send abortion rights back to the states. Being able to actually pull this off would depend on how many new justices Trump is able to appoint. Even if Trump were to appoint a conservative replacement to the late Antonin Scalia’s seat, it would be unlikely that the current Supreme Court would overturn Roe. It would take several more Supreme Court appointments to have enough conservative, pro-life justices on the bench to make overturning Roe a real possibility.
And thanks to the new data from Pew, it appears most Americans—including many who voted for Trump—would be upset to see the historic Supreme Court decision overturned. According to Pew, the percentage of Americans who oppose overturning Roe has been increasing steadily in the years since it was decided in 1973. Support for maintaining Roe is rising the fastest among Democrats, but a slight majority of Republicans at 53 percent also said they oppose overturning Roe.
Pew found no real difference between support for abortion rights between men and women, but the biggest divide lies in views on whether abortion should be legal in all cases. Seventy-nine percent of Democrats told Pew that abortion should be legal in most cases, and only 34 percent of Republicans said the same. While Roe v. Wade does promise safe and legal abortion to American women across state lines, it does still allow states to pass certain restrictions that can limit access—like gestational limits on abortion, and sonogram laws like those that exist in Texas.
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