Revisiting the Relationship between Attitudes toward Abortion and Capital Punishment
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Previous research has shown that public opinion on abortion is not a simply a dichotomy of pro-life and pro-choice. Instead, there appears to be three general attitudes: absolutist (opposing abortion in all cases, including rape), situationalist (opposing abortion for all cases except “hard” cases such as rape and incest), and pro-choice. Previous studies have also shown little or no correlation between attitudes towards abortion and capital punishment. The present study hypothesizes that those who take an absolutist stance on abortion will oppose capital punishment based on the value of life while situationalists will support capital punishment based on the value of responsibility. The results show support among those who are 23 and older, but no support that are 22 and younger. Implications are discussed.