Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Opposing sides pat their own backs as abortion rate reaches 40-year low

Today, Nia-Malika Henderson highlights this recent study finding that the abortion rate has reached its lowest point since 1973. The reason for the decline, however, is not so clear. As Henderson explains at WaPo's She The People:

Abortion opponents are pointing to a slew of measures across the country that have restricted abortion access, including mandating sonograms before the procedure and banning abortions after 20 weeks. Data suggest that abortion rates were actually dropping before some of the restrictions were put in place.


Abortion rights activists say women are taking greater advantage of birth control. They argue it’s important that women still have the rights to make choices about their reproductive health with their doctors and their families.


The study didn’t give reasons for the new finding–17 abortions for every 1,000 women in 2011, a 13 percent drop since 2008–but suggested that the economic downturn and better use of contraception are possible factors.


But what exactly do these numbers mean for the political conversation around abortion?

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