Prusaczyk, E., & Hodson, G.
Re-examining left-right differences in abortion opposition: The roles of sexism and shared reality
There exists a strong left-right divide in abortion attitudes, with the political right being more antiabortion. Popular rhetoric suggests that this divide is explained by the right’s amplified concern about the humanness of the preborn, but recent research questions this position, instead positing greater sexism on the right as a mechanism. We re-examined this latter assumption in the United States (N = 296) and consider an additional explanation: those on the right (vs. left) are especially likely to experience shared reality with key political figureheads, for instance, the then-nominated Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch, which further facilitates their antiabortion stance. We find support for the conservatism →sexism →antiabortion pattern, but shared reality as mediator overrides the effect of sexism. With no sex differences observed, antiabortion positions appear to be more about individual differences in ideology and epistemic motivations than group membership or sexism. Implications and future directions are discussed.
Testing, Psychometrics, Methodology in Applied Psychology, 2019, Vol. 26, pp. 431-445, DOI: 10.4473/TPM26.3.8