Most Americans support equal rights for women, even when it comes to reproductive rights and the right to have an abortion:
The CNN-USA Today Gallup poll asked the public, do you want a new Supreme Court justice to be someone who would vote to uphold Roe v. Wade -- the decision that legalized abortion -- or someone who would vote to overturn it?
By better than two to one, Americans prefer a Supreme Court nominee who would vote to uphold Roe v. Wade -- and continue to give constitutional protection to abortion rights.
Even Republicans are divided on the issue. Nearly half want a justice who would uphold abortion rights.
At Ms. Magazine, Celinda Lakes looks at how the American people feel on the issues:
A recent ABC News/Washington Post poll found that 56 percent of respondents nationwide favored keeping abortion legal in all or most cases. The survey of 1,082 adults, conducted in April 2005, showed that only 14 percent of those surveyed wanted to keep abortion illegal in all cases, with another 27 percent wanting most cases to be illegal.
Voters donâ€™t want the government and politicians involved in their choice about abortion. In a recent survey by The Mellman Group, 62 percent of respondents felt the government should not interfere with a womanâ€™s access to abortion. Only 33 percent believe the government should restrict access.
But what about the Supreme Court specifically, and its stance on Roe v. Wade?
Nearly 60 percent of Americans say that, if presented with an opportunity to appoint one or more new justices to the Supreme Court, President Bush should pick individuals who would uphold Roe.
The Associated Press/Ipsos-Public Affairs Poll, which surveyed a national sample of 1,000 adults last November, found that only three in 10 respondents (31 percent) favored nominating justices who would overturn Roe.
It's a fairly sure bet that the wingnuts won't like that. But reality never stopped them before. They're certain to start whining again about a potential filibuster. The only problem is that the people want a robust confirmation process:
Three-quarters of the respondents in a poll of 1,000 likely voters said that the Senate should examine each of the presidentâ€™s nominees carefully and make its own independent judgment. Only 24 percent thought that the Senate should just confirm whomever Bush puts forward.
In fact, maybe this is a good time to note that most people are against the radical conservatives' efforts to take away birth control from women:
When the debate expands beyond abortion, voters show overwhelming support for a number of issues impacting womenâ€™s reproductive rights, family planning and prevention of unintended pregnancies. Voters recently surveyed by Planned Parenthood Federation of America overwhelmingly (78 percent) favor requirements that schools teach sex education, and 79 percent favor access to emergency contraception (EC) for rape and incest victims.
A large majority (65 percent) favors EC for all women, and 66 percent said that health-insurance policies should cover contraceptives. Respondents further showed strong support (67 percent) for a law making it clear that contraception does not constitute abortion and should not be regulated by abortion legislation. Furthermore, in the recent debate over pharmacists refusing to fill prescriptions, only 40 percent of those surveyed agreed that pharmacists should be allowed to do so.
Now a lot of radical agitators will try to claim that the Republicans won the last election, and that means the people support their extremely radical views to take away women's control over their own bodies. But in fact, this past November people were not voting on the abortion issue:
In the months since November 2004, a host of commentators insisted that abortion had a negative impact on the election; some even blamed Democratic candidate John Kerryâ€™s loss on his support for abortion rights.
However, data collected by Lake Snell Perry & Associates for the nonpartisan network Votes for Women 2004 shows that the election issues about which voters most cared were the economy (23 percent), national security and terrorism (19 percent), and the war in Iraq (13 percent).
When voters were asked what made them decide their presidential choice, only 2 percent volunteered the issue of abortion. Among Kerry voters, less than 1 percent offered this as an issue. Among Bush voters, only 2 percent said abortion determined their vote for president.
The radical conservatives like to bellow and crow about "the will of the people," but here it's quite obvious that they are out of step with the American people. Will they listen? Undoubtedly, the Republicans will do all they can to appease the radical pseudo-Christian special interests who ultimately want a Christian theocracy (like Iran, only without the Koran).
So what next? Contact your Senators and let them know how the people stand on the issues.