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What do the People Really Think? Making Sense of Public Opinion of Abortion

The struggle between pro-choice and pro-life movements focused on abortion procedures. Pro-choice advocates used a variety of legal tools to bring mifepristone-RU 486, or the “abortion pill”—into the United States for widespread distribution (Schroedel and Corbin 2002). Antiabortion activists campaigned against the pill when it was first introduced in France, and U.S. feminists had to play “catch-up” to ease the fears of the European companies who owned the drug that there was public support that would offset the promised pro-life boycott. Pro-choice activists, led by the Feminist Majority Foundation, had first to get patent permission, then find a company to manufacture the medications. Finally, after twelve years of work, approval came from the FDA in 2000, during the last days of the pro-choice Clinton administration (Schroedel and Corbin 2002). George W. Bush, Clinton’s successor, has voiced his disapproval of RU486, although it remains available.