That might seem a silly question, but I’m finding myself genuinely wondering. I’m going to use this post to write through my confusion, building toward a second, deeper question, which arises if we’re willing to take that first question seriously: Should single-issue anti-abortion voters prefer a course of action that leads to fewer abortions, or should they prefer a course of action that leads to more abortions but that makes the laws better reflect their convictions about the ethics of abortion? This, I’ll suggest, is the actual choice situation they face.

I’m not a single-issue anti-abortion voter myself, so I might well misstep at various points. And, because most of the single-issue anti-abortion voters I know personally are Catholic, I’m still likelier to misstep with respect to the non-Catholic moral underpinnings of abortion opposition. Still, I don’t think anything I say in setting out the considerations as I see them needs to contradict the ethical or spiritual commitments that underpin these voters’ political stance. Indeed, I am trying to reason from those ethical commitments as I understand them to the political question at hand. Let’s grant for the sake of argument that Amy Coney Barrett would vote to overturn Roe v. Wade. Why might a single-issue anti-abortion voter nonetheless oppose her appointment? As I see it, there are two types of reasons for opposition.

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