The Guttmacher Institute, a pro-abortion research group, made headlines this week with a media release and report saying that, in 2011, national abortions decreased to their lowest point since 1973—the year the Supreme Court decriminalized abortion through its Roe v. Wade decision. Certainly, if the Guttmacher numbers are reliable, this is cause for celebration. Sadly, even in light of the new numbers, it is still the case that one out of every five pregnancies ends in abortion.
But what Guttmacher did not point out was that its own revised national numbers, when compared to Planned Parenthood 2011 abortion numbers, reflect that Planned Parenthood committed 31.6 percent of all abortions in the United States in 2011. Yes, Planned Parenthood committed one out of every three abortions in the United States in 2011.
Here are some comparative numbers based on the Guttmacher report entitled “Abortion Incidence and Service Availability in the United States, 2011,” and Planned Parenthood’s annual reports, showing Planned Parenthood’s ever-increasing share of the U.S. abortion market:
Planned Parenthood committed 31.6% of abortions nationwide in 2011
Planned Parenthood committed 23.3% of abortions nationwide in 2006
Planned Parenthood committed 16.5% of abortions nationwide in 2001
Planned Parenthood committed 11.3% of abortions nationwide in 1996
Planned Parenthood committed 8.5% of abortions nationwide in 1991
Planned Parenthood committed 6.2% of abortions nationwide in 1986
The graph below shows that Planned Parenthood abortions continue to soar, even as national abortion rates have declined and leveled off.
National Abortions vs. Planned Parenthood Abortions
The new Guttmacher study said it sought to determine whether prolific abortion restrictions were the cause for the lower nationwide abortion rates. It concluded that they were not, even though Planned Parenthood continually complains that laws restricting abortion constitute a war on women, take away abortion availability, and compromise the supposed right to abortion.
Guttmacher’s study instead points to a concurrent drop in pregnancy rates and birth rates, and credits economic recession, better use of contraceptives, and increase in use of long-acting contraceptives—especially the IUD—for the nationwide declines. These are the same oral and long-acting contraceptives that became eligible for full payment by Obamacare at the behest of Planned Parenthood. The same contraceptives Planned Parenthood is fighting tooth and nail to force religious groups and individuals to pay for against their conscience.
The new study cites a July 2012 Guttmacher study, “Changes in Use of Long-Acting Contraceptive Methods in the U.S., 2007–2009.” The 2012 study underlies Planned Parenthood’s ramped up push for IUDs and implants in young women who have never before given birth—a use which is not approved by Bayer, the manufacturer of the much-advertised Mirena IUD. In fact, Bayer warns that the device is only approved for women who have previously given birth.
Despite those warnings by the manufacturers, the 2012 Guttmacher study insists that the IUD is safe for young women who have never given birth. It also says that the percentage of women on Medicaid who use IUDs is much higher than average. This points to the targeting of teens, and low-income and minority women by Planned Parenthood for implantation of these long-acting, dangerous devices.
The Guttmacher Institute began within the Planned Parenthood corporate structure as its research arm. While it claims to be independent of Planned Parenthood today, its studies and statistics are obviously spun out to bolster Planned Parenthood and help it in its quest to receive more and more government funding. Its numbers are generally used by both sides in the abortion battle, not because those of us who respect human life trust Guttmacher to produce sound statistics, but because Guttmacher is the only source that publishes numbers covering the entire United States.
With that in mind, many are questioning the accuracy of the numbers included in the new study. American Life League Associate group Pharmacists for Life International discounts the numbers entirely, saying that the true body count of abortions has not dropped precipitously these past few years, and cites the lack of inclusion of abortions caused by “chemical and mechanical abortions” such as the pill, the morning-after pill, implants and IUDs. American Life League president, Judie Brown, notes that the numbers also do not include the countless preborn babies killed by reproductive technology.
Operation Rescue notes in an e-mail blast, “[T]he Guttmacher numbers are not completely accurate because they relied on voluntary responses from abortion clinics, many of which had closed by the time this survey was conducted and were unavailable to contribute data.”
Operation Rescue recently released its own study that documented the closing of 87 surgical abortion clinics in 2013 and 73 percent of all abortion clinics since 1991. For Guttmacher researchers to say that those closures have had no significant impact on the abortion rates is disingenuous.
Priscilla Coleman, director of the World Expert Consortium for Abortion Research and Education (WECARE), weighs in on Mercator.net, saying, “[T]he data gathered is reasonably trustworthy. . . . However, many of the conclusions drawn are quite inappropriate, as they are not consistent with the data reported and/or involve inferences that are likely politically motivated, as opposed to being data-based.”
Coleman further notes that the report was published in the Guttmacher Institute’s own journal, Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health, as opposed to a mainstream peer-reviewed journal. “Thankfully,” Coleman says, “most journals would never permit the leaps made by [Guttmacher researchers] Jones and Jerman as they ‘explain’ their findings.”
Planned Parenthood itself shed a good deal of light on the purpose of the Guttmacher report in a media release on its website. It begins: “A report issued Monday by the Guttmacher Institute shows that abortion rates dropped considerably in 2011, a moment in time in which births were also down overall. Planned Parenthood Federation of America said the new report underscores the importance of affordable, accessible birth control.”
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Planned Parenthood head Cecile Richards said, “This report comes just as some politicians and corporations are trying to make it harder for women to get birth control by chipping away at the historic benefit in the Affordable Care Act that requires insurance plans to cover birth control without a copay.” Her words validate Coleman’s conclusion that the conclusions drawn from the study were politically motivated, and not data based.
Richards goes on to say, “Planned Parenthood is proud to provide abortion services for women who make the deeply personal decision to end a pregnancy, we are proud to fight for a woman’s right to make that decision without interference from politicians, and we are proud to provide birth control that prevents that need for abortion in the first place.”
Of course Planned Parenthood is “proud” to commit hundreds of thousands of abortions every year. The blood of innocent babies is the lifeblood of the Planned Parenthood conglomerate. In 2012, abortion provided, by very conservative estimates, $170 million for the abortion giant—a full 55.7 percent of its non-government clinic income. Planned Parenthood is not about reducing abortions—it’s about grabbing an ever-larger share of the U.S. abortion market.
STOPP has compiled numerous reports and statistics to help concerned citizens fight Planned Parenthood on the local, state, and national levels. Visit our website, www.stopp.org, to take advantage of our many years of gathering and careful analysis of Planned Parenthood statistics.
LifeNews.com Note: Rita Diller is the national director of American Life League’s Stop Planned Parenthood Project.