Only one in five people think overturning Roe v. Wade would be good for America.

That’s according to our recent online survey of 1,000 U.S. residents, responding to news about the U.S. Supreme Court’s draft opinion that, if enacted, would abolish the constitutional right to safe, legal abortion access.

Of those polled, only 20% feel this would have a positive impact on the country; another 35% cited a negative impact instead, leaving the majority (45%) unsure and undecided.

Similarly, 32% said that the legal status of abortion should “depend on the circumstance,” compared to 25% who think it should always be illegal and 22% who think the opposite.

No matter their individual beliefs, two out of five (44%) feel the Supreme Court will likely follow through with its intended decision, regardless of public scrutiny. 

“It does not represent the interests or the preferences of the American people,” one respondent said. “This also goes to show that the Supreme Court is an outdated institution that needs to be changed.”

“I’m 70% pro-choice, and 30% pro-life, so I feel torn,” said another. “Even if I don’t know what the answer is, I believe that it doesn’t start with taking people’s choices away.”

Others, however, aligned with points made in Justice Samuel Alito’s draft majority opinion.

“What people are ignoring is that even if they do, it will not outlaw abortion in the U.S.,” one response read. “It will return the decision to the individual states where it is supposed to have been all along.”

What do you know about state-by-state abortion restrictions? Take this ‘true or false’ quiz.

As many as 26 states could ban or heavily restrict abortion if Roe v. Wade is overturned, 13 of which have “trigger laws” that would go into effect immediately after the decision — impacting 36 million women and others who can become pregnant, the New York Times reported

According to Dr. Meera Shah, chief medical officer of Planned Parenthood Hudson Peconic in New York, that number represents “nearly half of the women of reproductive age in the United States.”

“We know the harm that will come from this decision because we’ve seen it play out in Texas,” said Shah. “People who do not have access to the financial resources and support they need to travel out of state are forced to carry pregnancies against their will, and some will seek abortion outside of the health care system.”

Although 31% of surveyed Americans would consider moving somewhere that aligns more closely with their own stance on abortion, another 7% said it would be financially and logistically difficult for them to do so.

Ten percent even claimed that it would be impossible for them to move — and another 18% said they’d refuse outright.

“Abortion is health care. Planned Parenthood and our partners have been preparing for every possible outcome in this case for decades,” added Shah. “Even in light of this leaked opinion, we will continue to provide the health care and education that has made Planned Parenthood a trusted resource for millions of people — no matter what.”

This OnePoll general population online survey was conducted in May 2022 with 1,000 Americans. As members of AAPOR – the American Association for Public Opinion Research, OnePoll researchers adhere to the principles and actions set out in the AAPOR Code.

Photo credit: Header image by Gayatri Malhotra