NATIONAL PULSE – 41% ‘somewhere in between’ on abortion issue


Pro-Life flags at Supreme Court building in Ottawa. (Image: Pixabay)


November 24, 2022 – It may often feel as though contemporary debates over abortion have fallen into a trap of simplicity in which the perspectives of Canadians about a complex issue are reduced to binary concepts: “pro-choice” or “pro-life,” legal or illegal, moral or amoral.

The latest research from the non-profit Angus Reid Institute finds that while a majority of Canadians are absolutists – either completely “pro-choice” (52%) or completely “pro-life” (8%) – a significant segment (41%) consider themselves somewhere “in between”.

This diversity of view includes Canadians who have had an abortion themselves. Among these women, three-in-five (58%) identify as pro-choice, six per cent say they are pro-life, and 36 per cent sit somewhere along the middle of the continuum.

Among those in this “in between” group that eschews the polarities of the debate, just over one-third (36%) are comfortable with abortion until 15 weeks of pregnancy – about the point when a fetus develops a heartbeat. Another one-quarter (23%) say abortion is acceptable until the point of fetal viability, about 23 to 24 weeks. Some who claim to be in between profess they simply do not know at what point in a pregnancy abortion is or isn’t acceptable (33%).

Other factors including gender, age, experience, and faith all influence perspectives on this issue, and are the focus of this second report in a three-part series looking at abortion in Canada.

To read Part One, which focused on respondents’ personal experiences with either having an abortion or carrying an unplanned pregnancy through to term, please click here.

More Key Findings:

  • Young women – those between the ages of 18 and 34 – are most likely to be completely pro-choice (65%) but also most likely to be completely pro-life (14%).
  • Canadians who ‘strongly agree’ that faith is an important part of their life are most likely to voice pro-life views (40%). That said, the same number (39%) say that they are somewhere in between the two extremes, and one-in-five say they are completely pro-choice (21%).
  • Canadians tend to prioritize the rights of the mother over the rights of the fetus. Three-in-five (58%) say that the viable fetus (after approximately 24 weeks) does not have equal rights to the mother, while 22 per cent believe that it does.

Link to the poll here:

About Mel Rothenburger (9504 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: