It’s Official: Abortion Bans Don’t Work

US Abortions INCREASE one year post Roe

Amber Fraley

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Photo by Gayatri Malhotra on Unsplash

I’m not going to lie — these numbers surprise me. Generally in societies that ban abortion, abortion numbers do fall, but only slightly, since people nearly always seek abortion elsewhere, or access an illegal procedure.

That’s not what’s happening in the US. This time last year, anti-choicers were crowing about the 10,000 fewer abortions recorded in the first two months after Roe v. Wade was overturned.

“We are celebrating the fact that at least 10,000 babies have a chance at life,” said Kristan Hawkins, the president of the anti-abortion group Students for Life.

“It’s a sign of course correction and of ordinary Americans finally having a say in how many lives are tragically lost to the tragedy of abortion,” she said.

Well, a full year has gone by now, and we have the receipts: Abortions went up in the US in first year after the fall of Roe. This is despite the fact 15 states in the South and Midwest have either banned abortion outright, or effectively banned abortion after just a few weeks. (As an aside, in 14 of those abortion ban states, there are no exceptions for rape or incest.)

While abortions decreased dramatically in ban states, states where abortion remains legal saw huge increases in out-of-staters seeking treatment. Illinois saw the biggest rise of over 21,000 abortions more than the year before, while Florida was a close second at around 20,000. And make no mistake, Republicans are already citing those increases as “abortion tourism,” in a bid to further expand their bans.

While Governor Ron DeSantis attempted to impose an abortion ban after only 6 weeks, the Florida Supreme Court has so far upheld a constitutional right to an abortion up to 15 weeks. If Florida’s 6-week ban takes effect, thousands of women and girls across the South will be forced to travel North to states like North Carolina and Virginia.

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Amber Fraley

Writing about abortion rights, mental illness, trauma, narcissistic abuse & survival, politics. Journalist, novelist, wife, mom, Kansan, repro rights activist.