The Americans who are most directly impacted by laws regulating abortion — women under 40, who remain the most likely group to become pregnant — remain some of the strongest supporters of abortion rights: a whopping 86% say the decision should be between a woman and her doctor.
This much is clear: Many of the most influential anti-abortion groups are also anti-contraceptive, and if they succeed in outlawing abortion, contraception could be next.
If the Supreme Court overturns Roe either formally or functionally — by allowing states vast leeway to curtail abortion rights — the Court and the Republican Party may see just how much of a minority abortion opponents actually are, how crucial abortion and contraception are for American women to be free and how angry women (and those who love them) will get when our rights to our own bodies are taken away by five or six conservative judges who are unaccountable to the voting public. The GOP face a guaranteed backlash if the anti-abortion movement gets what it wants, and the Court faces a potential loss of public confidence.
But this is also a lesson for journalists and other media-makers: abortion rights are not broadly controversial. This isn’t a debate; it is about an authoritarian minority seeking to force a majority to comply with its (largely religious) views. Americans support abortion rights. Americans understand that abortion is a private medical decision that should be between a woman and her doctor, not a woman and the state. And while too many Americans have been shamefully inert when it comes to supporting abortion rights, they will not shrug it off if those rights are taken away.
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