The majority of Americans do support restrictions on abortion. According to a poll performed by ORC International on behalf of CNN taken earlier this year, only 27% of Americans who particiated in this survey believe that abortion should be legal in all circumstances. An additional 13% believe that abortion should be legal in most circumstances, 38% believe that abortion should be legal in a few circumstances, and 20% believe that abortion should always be illegal according to the same poll. This poll also indicates that 56% of Americans who participated in this survey believe that abortions should not be funded by the government, and only 39% favor government funding of abortions.
According to another poll performed by the Knights of Columbus and Marist College Institute of Public Opinion in 2014, 84% of Americans believe that abortion should either be restricted or made illegal. Over 90% of Americans surveyed in this poll oppose abortions performed after the first six months of pregnancy. This poll also shows that over 50% of Americans surveyed in this poll do support the Supreme Court ruling in favor of laws that restrict or prohibit abortions. According to this poll, only 37% of those surveyed support taxpayer funding of abortion and over 70% believe freedom of religion should be protected, even when it violates government laws.
According to the Gallup Poll, only 26% of Americans surveyed in this poll believe that abortion should be legal in all circumstances, but 53% of Americans oppose the reversal of the Roe v. Wade decision. The disparity between the percentage who support restrictions on abortion and the percentage who oppose the reversal of Roe v. Wade indicates that some pro-life Americans who support restrictions on abortion might not fully understand the implications of the Roe v. Wade case. The Roe v. Wade decision allowed abortion-on-demand during the first trimester of pregnancy, allowed regulation of abortion during the second trimester of pregnancy in ways related to maternal health, and allowed states to prohibit abortion after viability except where necessary, in appropriate medical judgment, for the preservation of the life or health of the mother. The Roe v. Wade case, along with the Doe v. Bolton companion case, allowed abortion to be legal during all nine months of pregnancy within the United States. If more Americans had a better understanding of what Roe v. Wade was about and the arguments that were made in that case, more Americans would support the reversal of the Roe v. Wade case.
Even though the majority of Americans do support restrictions on abortion, there are barriers to appropriately regulating abortion in the United States. First, there are pro-abortion politicians at the state and federal levels within the United States who oppose reasonable regulations on abortion procedures. Second, there is pressure to keep abortion legal within the United States by pro-abortion politicians, reproductive rights organizations, and the abortion industry. Third, there is strong opposition to many laws that restrict or prohibit abortion procedures by the abortion industry, even where the laws in question are constitutionally permissible or the restrictions in question are considered to be reasonable by the majority of Americans. Last, there are restrictions on the ability to regulate abortion procedures within the United States due to rulings made by the United States Supreme Court in Roe v. Wade, Doe v. Bolton, and subsequent cases involving laws that regulate abortion procedures.