Abortion

States Diverge Widely on Abortion Policy

Big split between restrictions and liberalized approach

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Regional disparities over the abortion issue have grown during the past two decades, leading to an ever widening gulf between the nation's most conservative and most liberal regions.

A new reports that an eight-state region — Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, Texas and Oklahoma — has grown significantly more conservative when it comes to abortion, with opposition to legal abortion increasing by 12 percentage points since 1995-96. That's the biggest jump of any region in the nation over that period.

The result is a much wider divide between the South Central states and the region at the other end of the spectrum, New England, where support for legal abortion grew by 5 percentage points between 1995-96 and 2012-13.