New poll finds majority in favour of allowing abortion in certain circumstances

A new poll has found that the majority of Irish adults favour legalising abortion, in certain circumstances.

A Red C poll conducted for Newstalk has found that 61% believe abortion should be allowed for both significant fatal foetal abnormality/non-fatal foetal abnormality.

Some 59% felt that abortion should be allowed in the case of suicidal feelings on the part of the mother.

New poll finds majority in favour of allowing abortion in certain circumstances

However, only 41% of people believe termination should be available in any circumstance felt necessary by the mother.

Some 48% of respondents believe the 8th Amendment should be removed from the Constitution, while 41% of respondents believe that it should not.

The Amendment reads: "the State acknowledges the right to life of the unborn and, with due regard to the equal right to life of the mother".

Sinead Mooney, joint managing director of Red C Research, said that where a woman is raped or gets pregnant by a family member, there's strong support for termination.

“We had a very strong support for legalising abortion in that circumstance, almost eight in 10 adults agreed that it should be allowed in those circumstances,” she said.

“And then from there, support began to deteriorate.”

Differences amongst male and female respondents do not vary widely. The widest divergence is in the case of non-fatal foetal abnormality where 66% of men agree that abortion should be an option while only 57% of women agree with this assertion.

Speaking about the findings Richard Colwell, CEO of Red C Research said: “The results of this exclusive poll for Newstalk show that the majority of adults in Ireland would like to see legal options for abortion within certain circumstances to be introduced in Ireland.

“However, while seeking these changes, many remain committed to the ideals of the 8th Amendment.

“Suggesting that while at a national level the people want to see abortion laws within Ireland revised, they still want to see careful governance retained. “

Shane Coleman, Newstalk’s political editor, said: “There is a majority of people based on this poll who want to see changes in the 8th amendment but there is confusion in that.

“What we do know is that only 48% of people want to see the 8th Amendment removed. That would suggest if there is a referendum, it is far from a done deal.”

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