West News Wire: In the wake of the Dobbs ruling, which resulted in state bans and other limitations on abortion, public confidence in the US supreme court fell to its lowest point in at least 50 years in 2022, a significant survey revealed. 

According to the General Social Survey, the gap between Democratic and Republican support for abortion rights in 2022 was the widest ever. 

Since 1973, when Roe v. Wade made abortion legal across the country, the venerable University of Chicago survey has been gauging public confidence in the court. 

In the 2022 survey, just 18% of Americans said they had a great deal of confidence in the court, down from 26% in 2021, and 36% said they had hardly any, up from 21%. Another 46% said they have “only some” confidence. 

Women, Democrats, and those who believe a woman should be able to receive an abortion if she wants one “for any reason” were the main beneficiaries of the radical change. 

In 2022, only 12% of women said they had a great deal of confidence in the court, down from 32% in 2018 and 22% the year before. Democrats’ confidence dropped from 25% a year ago to 8% in 2022. Confidence in the court decreased from 25% to 12% among those who believe that any woman who wants an abortion should be able to get one. 

Even among Republicans, regarding a court dominated by Republican-appointed conservatives, confidence has slipped over the past several years. Twenty-six percent said they had a great deal of confidence in the court, down from 31% in 2021 and from 37% in 2018. 

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Over a period of months, the study was carried out using both in-person and online interviews. The majority of interviews were conducted after the conservative majority’s Dobbs ruling, which reversed Roe, was released in late June 2022, and all of them were conducted following the leak of the judgement’s draught seven weeks earlier. 

The poll revealed that although support for freely accessible abortion has improved since 2016, when just 46% of respondents agreed that abortion should be provided if a woman wants one and 54% disagreed, it did not move significantly between 2021 and 2022. 53% of respondents to the current survey agreed that it should be provided, compared to 47% who disagreed. 

The difference is driven by skyrocketing support for abortion rights among Democrats, while Republican levels of support are at or near a 50-year low. The 77%-28% split between Democrats and Republicans is the largest-ever partisan divide on the question. 

Large majorities of Americans said they think a woman should be able to have an abortion if her health is at risk, if there is a strong change of a serious defect in the baby or if the pregnancy is the result of rape. 

Multiple states ban abortion with no exception in cases of rape or incest. Mississippi’s ban has an exception for rape but not incest. 


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