Abortion Bans Boost Birth Rate By Thousands

Birth rates have shot up in several states since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v Wade. According to analysis by the Institute of Labor Economics, birth figures are up in every state that banned abortion, and around 32,000 extra babies were born. The data also suggests that between 20% and 25% of new mothers would have had an abortion if the option were available.

The study furthermore found that high numbers of births were to black and Hispanic women, whom analysts determined were the groups least able to afford to travel to another state. This is borne out by figures showing that the highest rates of birth were among women who live the furthest distance from a neighboring state where abortion is legal.

Texas saw the most significant increase at 5.1%, with Mississippi in second place at 4.4%. Kristan Hawkins, the president of Students for Life of America, said, “It’s a triumph that pro-life policies result in lives saved.” Nationwide, however, figures have stayed about the same.

Abortion remains legal in most states, but some have placed time restrictions or provided exceptions in some instances. The procedure is illegal with no exceptions, such as for cases of rape or incest, in Texas, Oklahoma, Idaho, South Dakota, Missouri, Arkansas, Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky, and Louisiana.

North Dakota has also instituted a ban but will allow exceptions within the first six weeks if the pregnancy resulted from rape. Indiana and Mississippi accommodate limited exceptions in cases of rape, and in West Virginia, a judge ruled against exceptions in August. In Arizona, Nevada, Nebraska, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida, abortion is legal but with time restrictions attached.

Among the remaining states, some allow abortion until 24 weeks, at which time the fetus can live without the mother; these include California, Washington, and New York. Legal battles are underway in Wyoming and Ohio, whereas in Michigan, voters chose to enact legislation to protect abortion rights.