U.S. Abortion Rate Down

Almost two weeks after the national March for Life rally in Washington, D.C., the Guttmacher Institute reported a 13 percent drop in national abortion rates between 2008 and 2011, making for the lowest rate since 1973, when abortion on demand was legalized in the United States. “No evidence was found,” however, according to Guttmacher, of a correlation between the declining rate and new abortion restrictions established between 2008 and 2011. The study was released on Feb. 3. Carol Tobias, president of the National Right to Life Committee, stated that the declining numbers “shows the long-term efforts of the right-to-life movement,” even though Guttmacher researchers gave no credit to groups against abortion. Legislative efforts and pro-life campaigns “should not be minimized when discussing the decline in abortion numbers,” Tobias said in an N.R.L.C. news article. According to Guttmacher, “more effective contraceptive methods” may have contributed to the decline in unintended pregnancies, thus causing a decline in abortions. The study reported 16.9 abortions per 1,000 women age 15 to 44 in 2011, totaling almost 1.1 million abortions that year. The rate of abortion in the United States peaked in 1981, with nearly 30 abortions per 1,000 women.

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