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Abortion Statistics

The politics of abortion often centers on the lack of choices a mother has because her pregnancy threatens her health, life, or finances. So what percentage of the million abortions performed in the United States annually are because of these hard cases?

According to state-level statistics and information gathered by the Guttmacher Institute,

• 0.1 percent of abortions are because the life of the mother is at risk.
• 1 percent are because the physical health of the mother is at risk.
• 0.5 percent are because of fetal health issues.
• 0.3 percent are because of rape.
• 0.03 percent are because of incest.

On the other hand, an estimated 87-99 percent of abortions are performed for elective reasons, including:

• 4-8 percent because the mother “has enough children already.”
• 25-40 percent for economic reasons.
• 32 percent because mother is “too young/immature/not ready.”
• 16 percent “to avoid adjusting life.”
• 12-13 percent because “mother single or in poor relationship.”

It’s clear that the most common defenses of abortion used to attack laws protecting unborn life make up a small fraction of the tens of millions of abortions performed since the Supreme Court made Roe v. Wade the law of the land. Utah law and policy favor protecting unborn children, and they should continue to do so.

Dig Deeper

Abortion Statistics

Utah Citizen Network: Abortion

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