Most of the Republican candidates who shared their highly questionable views on rape in the last election lost their races and didn’t do the party any favors, plus it seems they reduced support for the anti-abortion policies they were clumsily trying justify. A new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll finds that for the first time, a majority of Americans, 54 percent, believe that abortion should be legal in all or most cases. A combined 44 percent said abortion should be either totally illegal, or banned with some exceptions. Also 70 percent of Americans said Roe v. Wade shouldn’t be overturned, up from 58 percent in 1989. “The dialogue we have had in the last year has contributed … to inform and shift attitudes,” said pollster Bill McInturff, who worked on the study. Tuesday happens to be the 40th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision, and advocates for abortion rights will certainly be surprised that Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock got them a gift.