Scarborough claimed country is “50-50” on abortion issue, but majority wants Roe v. Wade upheld

MSNBC host and former U.S. Representative Joe Scarborough (R-FL) asserted that Americans are evenly divided on the issue of abortion, but polling shows that the country is not evenly split on whether abortion should be banned entirely. On the November 8 edition of Scarborough Country, Scarborough suggested that the ratio of those who oppose abortion to those who do not is “about 50-50” ; in fact, only 16 percent of voters think abortion should be illegal in all cases, according to exit polls conducted during the November 2 presidential election.

From an interview with author and former Washington Post investigative reporter Carl Bernstein on the November 8 edition of MSNBC's Scarborough Country:

SCARBOROUGH: What about abortion?

BERNSTEIN: What about abortion?

SCARBOROUGH: Is that a small minority opposed to abortion?

BERNSTEIN: I believe, again --

SCARBOROUGH: It's about 50-50, isn't it?

BERNSTEIN: No, I don't think the figures are 50-50.

SCARBOROUGH: Yeah, they're pretty close to 50-50.

Exit polls from the November 2 presidential election found that 55 percent of voters believe that abortion should be legal in all or most cases. Only 16 percent believe it should be illegal in all cases; 26 percent believe it should be illegal in most cases. Further, an Associated Press-Ipsos poll conducted November 3-5 found that 61 percent of Americans “think President [George W.] Bush should nominate Supreme Court justices who would uphold the Roe v. Wade decision” that protects a woman's right to an abortion, while only 34 percent think justices who will overturn the decision should be appointed.