Numbers, Facts and Trends Shaping Your World

Support Stem Cell Research

By a 56%-32% margin, the American public believes that it is more important to conduct stem cell research that may result in new medical cures than to avoid destroying the potential life of embryos involved in such research; in the past five years, the proportion favoring stem cell research has increased 13 percentage points. A July 2006 poll by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press also found that people who have heard more about the issue are more supportive, with nearly seven-in-ten respondents who say they are paying “a lot” of attention to the issue favoring continuing research. However, a majority (54%) of those who are paying just a little attention to the controversy also wants stem cell research to continue. The majority flips among those who say they have heard nothing: Among these, 56% say it is more important not to destroy embryos. Support for continuing stem cell research is highest among mainline Protestants and secular individuals. Among both groups, about seven-in-ten favor continuing stem cell research. Fewer than half of all white evangelicals (44%) express support, but this represents a 12-point increase over the preceding year. More education also correlates with increased support for stem cell research, and every age group except the very oldest expressed majority support. Read More