North Dakota's Drop In Abortions Likely Part Of A National Trend


“[North Dakota]’s lone abortion provider performed less than 1,200 abortions last year, the lowest number in more than a decade and down more than 11 percent from 2012,” reports the Fargo Forum’s Kyle Potter. Tammy Kromenaker, who runs North Dakota’s only abortion clinic called the drop “good news,” but then also blamed it on the state’s new anti-abortion laws which she opposed:

Kromenaker attributes the drop to the series of laws to tighten abortion restrictions passed by the Legislature last year, which she speculated has given some would-be clients the impression that abortion is now illegal in North Dakota.

Maybe, but more likely is that North Dakota is part of a national trend away from abortion. Recently polling has found majority support for the idea that abortion is immoral, and not just on the religious right. A polling sample which allowed that pornography, alcohol consumption, unmarried cohabitation and marijuana use were all moral also found 57% saying that abortion was immoral.

Also, CDC numbers compiled through 2010 have shown major drops in abortions. “Compared with 2009, the total number and rate of reported abortions for 2010 decreased 3% and reached the lowest levels for the entire period of analysis (2001–2010),” stated a CDC report released in November of 2013.

In truth, the decline in abortions is probably rooted in two facts.

First, easier access to sex education and contraception. This may not please everyone on the religious right, but fewer unwanted pregnancies means fewer abortions. In fact, the pro-abortion folks may be their own worst enemies in this regard. The easier it is to prevent pregnancy through things like contraception, the less sympathy the public at large is going to have for women who want to abort unwanted pregnancies.

Second, an enduring disapproval of abortion among a majority of Americans, as the poll cited above indicates. This may not please the pro-abortion folks, but acceptance of abortion isn’t growing in a nation that is finding acceptance for things like gay marriage and recreational drug use.