Journal Article

Abortion, Gay Rights and Politics in Britain and America: A Comparison

Martin Durham

in Parliamentary Affairs

Published on behalf of Hansard Society

Volume 58, issue 1, pages 89-103
Published in print January 2005 | ISSN: 0031-2290
Published online January 2005 | e-ISSN: 1460-2482 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/pa/gsi008
Abortion, Gay Rights and Politics in Britain and America: A Comparison

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Abortion has long played an important role in American politics. More recently, opposition to gay marriage has emerged to prominence at both federal and state levels. In Britain, changes to abortion law have become a subject of dispute once more while arguments about gay rights have taken place not only in Parliament but also within the Conservative Party. What has not occurred, however, is the level of conflict that has been experienced in American politics. This article examines the different ways these issues have impacted upon the political system in the two countries, and explores what factors best explain the contrasts and commonalities.

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Subjects: Parliamentary and Legislative Practice ; Law and Politics ; Political Institutions ; UK Politics

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