FEW WORDS IN THE HISTORY of the United States have caused more controversy than abortion. Abortion is an issue that encourages absolutist views on both sides. Pro-choice advocates argue that abortion rights deal with the right of women to control their own bodies. Anti-choice advocates claim that abortion is murder under all circumstances. Other views are more moderate. Some anti-choice may accept rape, incest, fetal deformity, and threats to maternal mortality as valid exceptions to a total ban on abortions. Some pro-choice advocates may oppose late-term abortions. The battle for control of the issue has been waged in homes, family-planning clinics, the streets, and in administrative offices, courts, and legislatures at both the state and national levels.

Conservatives who believe that government should uphold traditional sanctions ...

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