Analysis

How many abortions are performed in the United States?

The answer is almost always “more than you think.”

ultrasoundThe year 2013 brought the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, which legalized abortion in the United States. How many lives have been lost since that ruling?

The most reliable source of information for abortion statistics is the Guttmacher Institute, which once served as a research arm for Planned Parenthood and is named for Alan Guttmacher, a former president of Planned Parenthood. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) collects abortion data as well, but states are not required to report their totals to the CDC, and several states are often not counted at all. This means that the CDC’s statistics are often far lower than the more accurate numbers from the Guttmacher Institute, since Guttmacher conducts its own private research and goes straight to the source: abortionists themselves.

For the year 2008, for example, the CDC reported 825,564 abortions, while the Guttmacher Institute found that hundreds of thousands more abortions were performed, at 1,212,350 abortions for the year 2008. This means that one abortion was performed every 26 seconds.

And in the 40 years since Roe v. Wade was passed, according to the NRLC, which analyzed data from the CDC and the Guttmacher Institute, over 52 million abortions have been performed.

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