The ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union) and a Catholic organization (Catholics for Choice) have released a joint poll that shows Americans oppose denying health coverage based on religious reasons. In fact, not only do the majority of Americans oppose it, but the majority of Catholics do too, despite the constant fight against personal choice by the upper echelons of Catholic priesthood.
In a press release by Catholics for Choice, they describe the five main things discovered by the poll:
- The great majority of Americans (81 percent) says, “The law should not allow companies or other institutions to use religious beliefs to decide whether to offer a service to some people and not others.”
- Sixty-nine percent of Americans think it is wrong for a university to deny birth control coverage. An equal number of Catholics (68 percent) objects, although much of the opposition to this healthcare provision came from Catholic leaders. Seventy-seven percent of Americans, and an equal proportion of Catholics, object to pharmacies refusing to fill birth control prescriptions.
- Eighty-seven percent of Americans (and a similar percentage of Catholics), say that a doctor should not be allowed to withhold information about fetal defects for fear a woman might consider an abortion. Sixty-eight percent of Americans, and 66 percent of Catholics, say it is wrong for a doctor to refuse to refer for an abortion.
- Sixty-two percent of Americans and 59 percent of Catholics oppose allowing a Catholic hospital to decline to perform an abortion that is medically necessary to protect a woman’s health.
- Eighty-eight percent of Americans and 86 percent of Catholics believe voters don’t have an obligation to follow a Catholic bishop’s recommendation on how to vote. Seventy-nine percent of Americans and 75 percent of Catholics believe Catholic politicians don’t have an obligation to follow the hierarchy’s directives.
The following infograph shows quite clearly that Americans disprove of this across both religious and partisan lines:
As you can see, even Republicans disapprove of such religious exemptions by an overwhelming majority. Even when you switch the questions to abortion, Americans still favor personal choice:
Although the gap is smaller, the majority of every demographic still shows that they disfavor organizational religious exemptions in cases like these. It looks like America is catching on — if you don’t want an abortion or contraception, don’t get an abortion or use contraception. That simple.