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Wisconsin scholars lament that abortion ban has already saved the lives of thousands of babies in the Badger state

by | Dec 14, 2023

Nationally, at least 32,000 babies are alive today because of the Dobbs decision and vigorous action by state legislatures

By Dave Andrusko

They are not the first and by no means will they be the last but the moaning and groaning of Tiffany Green, an associate professor of population health sciences and obstetrics and gynecology at University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Jenny Higgins, a professor at the University of Wisconsin, reveals in unambiguous terms the life-saving impact of pro-life legislation.

Their first sentence—” The evidence is out: Banning abortion in our state increased births that were most likely unintended”—is followed by their conclusion—”This increase harms Wisconsinites and their families in multiple ways.”

Not a single syllable in their 518 word long essay has anything good to say about the tens of thousands of babies across the United States who are alive today thanks to the Dobbs decision and vigorous action by state legislatures.

We repost today a comprehensive analysis by Kelsey Hazzard, Board President of Secular Pro-Life, who has plenty of good things to say about the impact of pro-life legislation. She quotes from a New York Times story that manages to come up with the same gloomy conclusion only on a wider scale than a single state:

The New York Times reported that “almost a quarter of women who would have gotten abortions carried their pregnancies to term” and that “the [anti-abortion] laws caused around 32,000 annual births.” It quoted a researcher as stating that “when you take away access [to abortion], it can affect fertility.” While none of these statements are untrue, they are dancing around the obvious. In an article about babies, they can’t bring themselves to talk about babies! Not until the fifth-to-last paragraph is there any sort of acknowledgment that the pregnancies carried to term, the births, the “affected fertility,” represent actual human people:

According to the New York Times’s Margot Sanger-Katz and Claire Cain Miller, “Births increased in every state with a ban.”

They “used a statistical method that compared states with similar trends in births before the Dobbs decision to estimate how much a ban changed the expected birthrate. This increased their certainty that the change was because of the policy and not other factors.”

Green and Higgins came to their conclusions based on study entitled “The Effects of the Dobbs Decision on Fertility”:

On page 17 of the 66-page analysis, we read “Our primary analysis indicates that in the first six months of 2023, births rose by an average of 2.3 percent in states enforcing total abortion bans compared to a control group of states where abortion rights remained protected, amounting to approximately 32,000 additional annual births resulting from abortion bans.”

They add, “As a back-of-the-envelope calculation, we compare the estimated increases in births resulting from bans to the last available resident abortion counts prior to the Dobbs decision and estimate that roughly one-fifth to one-fourth of people seeking abortions did not receive them due to bans.”

To make this encouraging point again, it’s true that some women will move out of state with protective laws to ones that do not. But as many as 25% did not have abortion. As a result, 2.3% more babies were born in states with abortion bans compared to states without bans.

The Times’s  Sanger-Katz and Miller end their story with the hopeful news (to them) that, for a variety of reasons,” births could decline.”

“The abortion landscape continues evolving,” Professor Mayra Pineda-Torres said. “People are adjusting, providers are adjusting, laws are adjusting.”

Categories: State Legislation