Increase in U.S. Abortions Prior to Supreme Court’s Decision on Roe v. Wade

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By Carina

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a report indicating a rise in the number of abortions in the United States in the year before the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade in 2022.

According to the CDC’s annual report, there was a 5 percent increase in abortions in 2021 compared to 2020, with a total of 622,108 abortions reported across 46 states.

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This increase follows a period of decline and fluctuations in abortion rates over the previous years.

Breakdown of Abortion Statistics

The report revealed significant racial disparities in abortion rates, with Black women accounting for the highest percentage of abortions.

 It also noted that most abortions were carried out using medication and that women in their 20s accounted for the majority of these procedures.

Marital Status and Abortion Rates

The CDC found that a vast majority of women who received abortions were not married, with a notably higher abortion ratio for unmarried women compared to married women.

The CDC report acknowledges multiple factors influencing abortion rates, including access to services, contraception availability, and legal restrictions on abortion providers and clinics.

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Adolescent Pregnancies and Abortion Rates

The report suggests a continuing decrease in U.S. adolescent pregnancies, aligning with the observed reduction of adolescent abortions and births.

The data collected by the CDC precedes the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, a ruling that effectively returned the power to legislate abortion to individual states. Since the decision, several states have implemented bans or restrictions on abortion.

Incomplete Reporting in Several States

The report highlights that some states, including California, Maryland, and New Hampshire, do not report abortion data to the CDC, leading to incomplete national figures.

The CDC has been documenting the number and characteristics of women obtaining legally induced abortions since 1969, providing crucial data for understanding trends and changes in abortion practices in the U.S.

Post-Roe v. Wade Fertility Rates

An analysis by the Institute of Labor Economics found that states with abortion bans experienced a slight increase in fertility rates compared to states where abortion rights remained protected.

Reactions to the Findings

Pro-life groups have expressed approval of the findings, viewing the increase in births as a positive outcome of abortion policies.

However, the overturning of Roe v. Wade continues to fuel debate and division within the country.

Justice Samuel Alito, writing for the majority in the Supreme Court’s decision, criticized the original Roe v. Wade ruling, while Justices Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan dissented.

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