The landmark Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion in the United States, Roe v. Wade was handed down 40 years ago today. While Roe v. Wade established that abortion is a private matter between a woman and her doctor, politicians and anti-choice extremists across the country have worked to restrict abortion access since even before this historic ruling.
2012 saw the second highest number of state-level anti-choice provisions enacted in a year on record. The highest was in 2011 with 93 state laws and regulations restricting abortion access enacted. However, these totals reflect provisions enacted during a calendar year, not legislative session. When considering the 2011-2012 legislative session, a total 136 anti-choice provisions were enacted.
Despite constant attacks on reproductive rights, public opinion on Roe v. Wade has remained steady. According to a new poll by the Pew Research Center, 63% of those interviewed believed that Roe v. Wade should not be completely overturned compared to 29% who favored overturning the ruling. In addition, these findings reflect the same sentiments as the Pew polls conducted in the early 1990's.
Media Resources: Feminist Newswire 1/17/2013, 1/7/2013