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Improving Public Opinion SurveysInterdisciplinary Innovation and the American National Election Studies$
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John H. Aldrich and Kathleen M. McGraw

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780691151458

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691151458.001.0001

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Intense Ambivalence

Intense Ambivalence

The New 2006 and 2008 Anes Abortion Attitude Measures

Chapter:
(p.303) Chapter 17 Intense Ambivalence
Source:
Improving Public Opinion Surveys
Author(s):

L. J Zigerell

Heather Marie Rice

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691151458.003.0017

This chapter investigates a new set of measures of attitudes about abortion policy. It argues that the standard ANES battery violates several principles of good question wording and also fails to take into account the timing of abortion, which is a central element of American law and current discourse. Strikingly different conclusions about the electorate's views about abortion emerge in the comparison of the standard and new items: whereas the traditional item indicates that a majority of Americans are opposed to abortion in all circumstances, or support it only in the limited rape–incest–life options, the new items suggest a symmetry in abortion attitudes, with as many Americans supporting the extreme pro-choice as the extreme pro-life options.

Keywords:   abortion, 2006 ANES, 2008 ANES, abortion attitude measures, abortion policy, abortion attitudes

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