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New CDC Reports Shows Number of Abortions Continues to Decline, Lowest Since Roe v. Wade

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Above: Students for Life of America's Kristi Hamrick appeared on the Wednesday afternoon edition of CBN's Newswatch to respond to the CDC's report about the lower abortion rate. Newswatch is seen weekdays on the CBN News Channel.

Pro-lifers are rejoicing over the latest report issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) which shows a steady national decrease in the number of abortions. 

The CDC reported there were 619,591 abortions in 2018 and 612,719 abortions in 2017 - a drop of nearly 57 percent from the record high in 1990 with a total of 1,429,247 abortions. 

The numbers haven't fallen this low since Roe v. Wade, the 1973 Supreme Court ruling that legalized abortion nationwide. That year 615,831 abortions were reported.

However, the numbers reported by the CDC aren't entirely accurate.

The agency requests abortion data from 52 regions (50 states, Washington, D.C., and New York City), but their contribution is optional. In 2017 and 2018, California, Maryland, and New Hampshire refused to submit their statistics.

The CDC continues to obtain data on abortion-related deaths for 2018 but reported there were two abortion-related deaths in 2017 and eight in 2016 - indicating a decline.

Additionally, the 31 regions that submitted data on race and ethnicity show that Caucasian and African-American women still account for the largest percentage of abortions. 

  • Non-Hispanic white women – 239,782 estimated abortions
  • Non-Hispanic Black women - 208,183 estimated abortions
  • Hispanic women – 123,918 estimated abortions
  • Non-Hispanic women or other race – 47,709 estimated abortions

But, some say the drop in abortion numbers is worth celebrating.

Dr. Michael New with the Charlotte Lozier Institute tweeted there was a 2.5 percent decrease in the US abortion rate and that it's fallen by 24.2 percent since 2009.

"The decline was widespread. Of the 45 states that reported abortion data in 2016 and 2018 — 29 saw their abortion rates decline," Dr. New explained. "Since 2009, there has been a 24.2 percent decline in the abortion rate and a 21.8 percent decline in the number of abortions performed. The U.S. abortion rate has declined by over 50% since 1980."     

He added that the primary cause for the drop in abortions is likely due to pro-life resources and the legal measures that have been taken.    

"The main reason why abortion rates are falling is not because there are fewer unintended pregnancies," New said. "In fact, the unintended pregnancy rate has fluctuated since 1981. An important reason is that a higher percentage of unintended pregnancies are being carried to term. This shows the pro-life educational, service, and yes, legislative efforts have all been effective at reducing the incidence of abortion." 

Pro-life activist Lila Rose tweeted, "Continue educating, supporting, advocating & legislating until every life is safe!" 

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About The Author

Andrea Morris

Andrea Morris is a Features Producer for The 700 Club. She came to CBN in 2019 where she worked as a web producer in the news department for three years. Her passion was always to tell human interest stories that would touch the hearts of readers while connecting them with God. She transitioned into her new role with The 700 Club in August 2022.