(WNCN) — As Americans remain sharply divided on the issue of whether abortion is morally acceptable or wrong, most don’t want to see the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case Roe v. Wade overturned.
According to researchers at Gallup, about 58 percent of Americans are opposed to overturning the Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, while 32 percent are in favor.
Since 1989, between 52 percent and 66 percent of U.S. adults have wanted to maintain the landmark abortion decision.
On Wednesday, a federal appeals court blocked Missouri from enforcing a sweeping state abortion law that bans the procedures at or after eight weeks of pregnancy.
The measure also would have also prohibited a woman from having an abortion because the fetus has Down syndrome.
Several states in 2021 have approved legislation seeking to prohibit abortions based solely on a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome. Governors in Arizona and South Dakota recently signed such bills into law, and similar measures are pending in North Carolina and Texas. Meanwhile, a federal appellate court said Ohio could begin to implement a 2017 law that has been on hold.
According to the landmark ruling, Roe specifies that states may regulate abortion before fetal viability in the interests of maternal health, but not ban the procedure before that developmental stage. Roe established a guideline of 24 to 28 weeks for fetal viability.
Researchers found that 56 percent of respondents are opposed to banning abortions after the eighth week of pregnancy, a threshold used in laws passed in two states (Arkansas and Utah), although both laws are currently blocked by court orders.
Fifty-eight percent of respondents oppose banning abortions once the heartbeat of a fetus (typically detected between six and eight weeks into pregnancy) can be detected — a measure which has passed in several Republican-led states which have now come into question in the courts.
About 57 percent of Americans are opposed to generally banning abortion if performed because the fetus is found to have a genetic disease or disorder, researchers found.
The bottom line is that not only do majority of respondents believe in not overturning Roe v. Wade, but they also oppose laws that limit abortion in early stages of pregnancy.