South Dakota Now Abortion Free as Last Abortion Business Stops Killing Babies

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jun 15, 2022   |   4:44PM   |   Washington, DC

South Dakota is now abortion free. The Plains state has become the second in the nation to not have any operating abortion centers as the last abortion business, run by Planned Parenthood in Sioux Falls, has stopped killing babies in abortions.

South Dakota follows Oklahoma as the second abortion free state in America after its Governor Kevin Stitt signed a Texas-style bill banning aboritons starting at conception with a private enforcement mechanism. Texas was the first state to ban aboritons but its abortion ban starts when the heartbeat of the unborn baby is detectable, at approximately six weeks, so not all abortions are banned.

The New York Times reported today on how the last South Dakota center is no longer doing aboritons, indicating that an out of state abortionists from Minnesota is no longer flying in to end the lives of babies before birth.

Although Roe v. Wade remains the law of the land, women can no longer get a legal abortion in two states, Oklahoma and South Dakota. In at least one other, Missouri, the only clinic is booked and not accepting new appointments. And in a fourth state, Wisconsin, clinics will not schedule abortions for after the end of the Supreme Court’s term in late June.

The only clinic in South Dakota, Planned Parenthood in Sioux Falls, which also served patients from North Dakota and Minnesota, performed its last abortion Monday, even though the state has not yet banned it. Abortions at the clinic were already sporadic. A Minnesota doctor flew in around once a month to provide them.

And in some other states, legal abortion has become much more scarce. In Idaho there were four clinics, but Planned Parenthood in Boise closed June 1. At another, Compassionate Abortion Care in Boise, the only doctor is set to take a summer vacation, and staff members are telling patients that abortion may not be legal by the time he returns. A third is offering only medication abortion.

This isn’t the first time the Planned Parenthood abortion center in Sioux Falls has shut down, as it temporarily closed during COVID in 2020 and the state saw a record low aboriton total that year as a result.

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There were just 125 abortions reported in South Dakota in 2020, a drop of 70 percent from 2019 and a record low in the state. Chemical abortions fell by 65 percent, making up 39 percent of all abortions in the state.

Earlier this year, South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem signed into law a pro-life bill that bans mail-order abortions.

The new law would require abortion facilities to provide direct medical supervision to mothers when they take abortion drugs to abort their unborn babies and prevents the sales of such drugs by mail that kill babies and kill or injure mothers as well.

Gov. Kristi Noem, a pro-life Republican, proposed the legislation after Joe Biden’s administration got rid of safety regulations for the abortion drug mifepristone late last year and began allowing abortion businesses to sell it through the mail. After proposing legislation to restore the pro-life rule, the South Dakota legislature approved it.

“The two bills that I am signing today are crucial, because they are also protections for mothers,” Noem wrote in a statement. “We must remember that abortion has two victims: both the unborn child who loses their life and the mother who must go through the physical and emotional trauma of the procedure.”

The new law requires abortion facilities to provide the abortion drug mifepristone and a second drug, misoprostol, which is taken a day or two later to induce labor, to women in person by a doctor at an abortion facility.

Typically, abortion facilities give the first drug, mifepristone, to the woman in person and then send her home with the second drug, misoprostol, to take a day or two later. However, some now are selling the drugs through the mail without ever even seeing the woman.

The FDA has linked the abortion drug to at least 24 women’s deaths and 4,000 serious complications between 2000 and 2018. However, under President Barack Obama, the FDA stopped requiring that non-fatal complications from mifepristone be reported. So the numbers almost certainly are much higher.

New data and studies suggest the risks of the abortion drug are much more common than what abortion activists often claim, with as many as one in 17 requiring hospital treatment. Another study by the Charlotte Lozier Institute found that the rate of abortion-related emergency room visits by women taking the abortion drug increased more than 500 percent between 2002 and 2015.

South Dakota also has a law in place that would ban abortions completely if the U.S. Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade.