NRLC’s 6th annual “State of Abortion in America, 2019,” a must-read for pro-life activists: Part One

By Dave Andrusko

A week out from the annual March for Life and with both Congress and many state legislatures now in session, it’s the perfect time for NRLC’s “State of Abortion in America, 2019.” This 60- page overview is produced by expert staff at National Right to Life.

In Part One, we offer a summary. In Part Two, we will go into more specific detail.

NRLC President Carol Tobias ends her introduction with this terrific summary of the impact of NRLC’s efforts and the content of this must-reading report:

Pro-life education and legislative efforts are making an impact on our culture and in the lives of women facing unexpected pregnancies.

But there is still much to be done.

This sixth annual “State of Abortion in the United States” is not just a snapshot of where we are as the nation, but also a blueprint for how we move forward to build a culture that values life and respects mothers and their children.

The beauty of “State of Abortion in America, 2019,” as was the case with its five predecessors, is that the report is a highly readable, one-stop overview of the kinds of invaluable information on a myriad of topics that all pro-lifers should have at their fingertips.

There are six sections:

  • United States Abortion Numbers
  • Planned Parenthood: More Abortion, Less Care
  • Federal Policy & Abortion
  • State Laws & Abortion
  • Synopsis of U.S. Supreme Court Cases
  • The Presidential Record on Life

(The latter is the presidential records on life of Donald Trump, Barack Obama, George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George H.W Bush, and Ronald Reagan.)

“Abortion numbers” uses the two best sources to explain the-impossible-to-deny decline in the number of abortions. They are the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Guttmacher Institute. Nationally, abortions finally dipped below a million in 2013 for the first time since 1974. Guttmacher’s latest totals (for 2014) found a further drop to 926,000 abortions!

“Planned Parenthood: More Abortion, Less Care” is an eye-opener to the average citizen who has been fed the line that PPFA is all about “women’s health.” In its latest annual report, PPFA reported performing 332,757 abortions in 2017, which was an increase over 10,000 from the 321,592 it did in 2016. This is the second most abortions Planned Parenthood has ever performed in a single year, eclipsed only by a total of 333,964 reported for 2011. As has increasingly become the case, PPFA continued to provide fewer and fewer genuine health services (such as manual breast exams). Its bottom line grew to a whopping $1.6651 billion in revenues for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2018. Fewer patients, more money—the reality behind PPFA’s polished image.

“Federal Policy & Abortion” is an extremely in-depth look, filled with historical background and a clear explanation of NRLC’s top congressional priority for the 116th Congress.

“State Laws & Abortion,” likewise, offer pro-life activists a great summary of state laws enacted by NRLC’s state affiliates. NRLC has been successful in passing laws such as the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act and the Unborn Child Protection from Dismemberment Act. Among the most recent legislative initiatives are laws requiring information be made available to women who, should they change their minds half-way through a chemical abortion, that there is a realistic possibility of saving their baby. And don’t forget “Prenatal Nondiscrimination Acts” which are intended to prevent eugenic abortions.

“Synopsis of U.S. Supreme Court Cases” provides a brief, but telling synopsis of Supreme Court cases on abortion. It starts with Roe and Doe in 1973 and carries the reader through the 2007 Gonzales v. Carhart decision which upheld the federal Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act ending with the 2016 Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt decision which gutted some provisions (but not all) of a Texas law passed in 2013.

We will take a second look at “The State of Abortion in America, 2019” on Friday. Be sure to read the report.