Polls and Abortion

Back on September 28, Rasmussen conducted a poll that covered Colorado’s Amendment 48:

In November Amendment 48 entitled “Definition of a Person” will be on the ballot. This amendment to the Colorado constitution defines a person a s– “any human being from the moment of fertilization”. If the election were held today would you vote for or against this amendment?

39% For
50% Against
11% Not sure

Do you believe that life begins at conception, or at birth, or somewhere in between?
41% At conception
22% At birth
33% Somewhere in between
4% Not sure

Support for the measure dropped by the election; only 26.7 percent of voters favored the measure.

What is extraordinary is that the measure did not receive a passing vote in a single county. In El Paso county, home of Focus on the Family, the measure got 37.6 percent of the vote.

Unfortunately, the poll reinforced the fallacy that the measure had something to do with when “life begins.” Amendment 48 said nothing about when “life begins.” And the poll includes no correct answer to the question anyway. As Diana Hsieh and I pointed out, life precedes conception; both the sperm cell and egg are alive. Life is an unending chain spanning back billions of years. The relevant question is not when life begins — everyone grants a fertilized egg is alive — but when personhood begins.