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Charlotte Lozier Institute

Phone: 202-223-8073
Fax: 571-312-0544

2776 S. Arlington Mill Dr.
#803
Arlington, VA 22206

Maternal & Public HealthAbortion

2021 Abortion Trends and Predictions for 2022 and Beyond

This is Issue 24 of the American Reports Series.

2021 Trends 

 

Total Abortions

As of June 14, 2023, there were 31 states that had released abortion statistics for both 2020 and 2021.[i] Twenty-two states reported an increase in abortions from 2020, while nine states reported that abortions declined. Overall, in these 31 states, abortions increased by 5.1 percent. Eight states saw increases of more than 10 percent. In South Dakota, abortions jumped by more than 50 percent and in Connecticut abortions rose by over 40 percent, while in West Virginia abortions increased by more than a third. Declines in abortions in 2020 due to COVID-19 may have contributed to the relative increase in 2021, as South Dakota and West Virginia suspended abortions and other elective procedures because of the pandemic. Additionally, West Virginia abortions rebounded slightly after a sudden drop in 2019 when the state limited state funding for abortion.

The largest percentage decreases were seen in Idaho, which saw a 7.6 percent decrease in abortions from 2020, and Iowa and Maine, which also saw declines of seven percent from the previous year. All three of these states had reported increases in abortions in 2020.

Table 1. Total Abortions, 2020-2021 (31 states)

wdt_ID State 2020 2021 Change
1 Alabama 5,713 6,489 13.60%
2 Alaska 1,206 1,226 1.70%
3 Arizona (Occurrence) 13,273 13,998 5.50%
4 Arkansas 3,154 3,133 -0.70%
5 Colorado 9,869 11,580 17.30%
6 Connecticut 7,187 10,146 41.20%
7 Florida 74,868 79,817 6.60%
8 Georgia (Residence) 31,248 34,988 12.00%
9 Idaho 1,680 1,553 -7.60%
10 Indiana 7,756 8,414 8.50%
State 2020 2021 Change

Graph 1. U.S. Abortion Totals from States That Reported from 2009-2021 (29 states)[ii]

Graph 1: Total abortions in the 29 states that reported statistics for 2009-2021. Occurrence data for all states except for Georgia. Arizona is not included in the graph because the state’s current reporting standards went into effect in 2011, and Wyoming is not included because the state’s data was incomplete before 2020.

It is important to note that because some of the states with the greatest percentage changes are low-volume abortion states (e.g., South Dakota reported 192 abortions in 2021), the overall change in abortions in the United States between 2020 and 2021 was driven by some of the larger states. Florida reported an increase of over 4,900 abortions in 2020, while Georgia reported an increase of more than 3,700 abortions on state residents. Conversely, Texas abortions decreased by over 3,200 abortions, and the state had both the largest percentage decrease (six percent) and absolute decrease in abortions from 2020 to 2021.

However, this analysis of national abortion trends is incomplete because many states underreport abortions or do not collect abortion data at all. Of the 10 highest-volume abortion states identified by the Guttmacher Institute in 2020, one (California) collects no abortion data, one (New Jersey) has informed CLI that the state’s Department of Health will not be releasing anymore abortion data to the public, and two others (New York and Illinois) have not yet released 2021 abortion statistics.[iii]

Chemical Abortions

Of the 31 states that have released 2021 abortion statistics, 29 reported chemical abortion data for 2020 and 2021.[iv] Among these 29 states, chemical abortions jumped by eight percent from 2020 to 2021, representing 57 percent of these states’ total abortions in 2021. In 23 states, chemical abortions composed half or more of all abortions.

Table 2. Total, Chemical, % of Total in Chemical Abortions by State, 2020-2021

wdt_ID State Total (2020) Chemical (2020) % of Total (2020) Total (2021) Chemical (2021) % of Total (2021)
1 Alabama 5,713 2,514 44.0% 6,489 3,653 56.3%
2 Alaska 1,206 450 37.3% 1,226 442 36.1%
3 Arizona (residents only) 13,186 6,620 50.2% 13,896 6,720 48.4%
4 Arkansas 3,154 1,725 54.7% 3,133 1,190 38.0%
5 Colorado 9,869 6,480 65.7% 11,580 7,430 64.2%
6 Connecticut 7,187 3,763 52.4% 10,146 6,552 64.6%
7 Florida 74,868 41,809 55.8% 79,817 46,433 58.2%
8 Iowa 4,058 3,222 79.4% 3,761 2,992 79.6%
9 Idaho 1,680 889 52.9% 1,553 898 57.8%
10 Indiana 7,756 4,252 54.8% 8,414 4,791 56.9%
State Total (2020) Chemical (2020) % of Total (2020) Total (2021) Chemical (2021) % of Total (2021)

Georgia and Louisiana did not report the number of chemical abortions performed on state residents.

Twenty-three states reported that chemical abortions increased from 2020. Connecticut had the largest percentage increase (74 percent), while Florida had the largest absolute increase (4,624 chemical abortions). In 2021, twelve states reported increases in chemical abortions of more than 10 percent, with four of those states reporting an increase of more than 30 percent from 2020.

Only six states reported a decrease in chemical abortions from 2020. Arkansas had the largest percentage decrease (31 percent), and Texas had the largest absolute decrease (2,002 abortions). Both Maine and Texas reported decreases in abortion overall.

The trend toward increasing use of chemical abortion generally is likely to continue, as 2021 was the first full year without the Food and Drug Administration’s enforcement of its requirement for mifepristone to be dispensed to women in person.

In July 2020, abortion providers obtained a court order blocking a key element of the abortion drug’s Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS) requiring that mifepristone be dispensed in person. With the “in-person requirement” lifted, the abortion industry was no longer bound by safety precautions that had prevented the distribution of mifepristone online and through the mail. Abortion-by-mail became available in all states that did not have their own state-level protections in place. Immediately, websites sprang up across the country to take advantage of the new lax environment. Abortion providers partnered with online pharmacies like Honeybee Health and American Mail Order Pharmacy to distribute the drugs, although mifepristone was not available in brick-and-mortar pharmacies. The FDA pushed back in court, seeking to reinstate its regulations. However, in April 2021, under a new administration, FDA changed course and officially suspended the in-person requirement for the duration of the pandemic.

Then, in December 2021, FDA stated that those changes would be permanent and also announced the upcoming release of a brick-and-mortar pharmacy certification program. Abortion pill websites continued to increase and expand throughout 2022, and FDA released its updated regulations in January 2023. Consequently, mifepristone can be available in any pharmacy that has completed the certification process with the manufacturer as required by the FDA REMS.

This has reshaped the abortion industry in portions of the United States, as much of the increase in abortion-by-mail appears to have been concentrated among the new online networks. The Guttmacher Institute estimates that in 2020, only five percent of abortion centers mailed abortion pills, and only four percent partnered with an online pharmacy. A study led by the Society of Family Planning shows that abortions from online abortion pill providers increased from five percent of all abortions pre-Dobbs to nine percent after Dobbs.

A report from the Abortion Care Network, an alliance of independent, non-Planned Parenthood abortion centers, states that as of November 2022 there were at least 100 virtual abortion centers operating in the U.S. Of the 434 independent abortion centers identified by Abortion Care Network, approximately one-quarter were online-only. It is not yet clear how the new FDA pharmacy certification may impact the availability of abortion-by-mail from brick-and-mortar abortion centers.

This has exacerbated reporting problems. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has offered no guidance or standard recommendations of best practices for reporting telemedicine abortion, and state requirements are inconsistent and even diminishing. Additionally, the presence of international pharmacies and organizations like Aid Access, which illegally mails abortion drugs into the United States, further undermines the quality of abortion data availability and collection in the U.S.

However, FDA regulations are under litigation in Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine v. Food and Drug Administration, as a group of doctors and medical organizations have challenged the initial approval of the abortion pill in 2000 as well as regulatory changes FDA has made since then. The plaintiffs have disputed the accelerated process FDA used to approve the drug, the lack of rigorous testing before its use on minors, and the flawed data upon which FDA has relied to determine that mifepristone is safe. FDA approval of mifepristone was suspended by a district court, but the district court decision was blocked as the Fifth Circuit considers the case. As litigation proceeds, the widespread availability of mifepristone may change.

Looking Forward

As predicted in CLI’s analysis of 2018 and 2019 abortion data, total abortions continued to increase from 2020 to 2021 with chemical abortion playing a major role. While in 2020 and 2021, both the total number of abortions and chemical abortions increased in a majority of the states that reported abortion data for both years, data for 2022 and future years may show national abortion totals decreasing. Due to the reversal of Roe v. Wade, states are now free to set their own abortion policies and implement new abortion limits. Given the flurry of state activity following this monumental court decision in June 2022, the abortion landscape has changed dramatically in a short period of time (see Table 3). In the states with pro-life laws in effect, abortion totals have decreased. However, it is also expected that abortions in states with no lifesaving laws, particularly those that border pro-life states, will see an increase and several of them are actively promoting cross-border abortions.

There will likely be an increase in women from pro-life states traveling to seek abortions in abortion-permissive states. In the months directly before and after Dobbs, a group spearheaded by the Society of Family Planning surveyed abortion facilities across the United States. The survey results show that in the nine months following Dobbs, abortions in pro-abortion states increased by approximately 56,000, likely due to women traveling from out-of-state. However, the increase was offset by steep declines in states that enacted pro-life protections. In pro-life states, abortions dropped by over 81,000 during the nine months from July 2022 through March 2023, for a net decrease of more than 25,000 abortions nationwide.

Figure 1. Gestational Limits on Abortion in the States Immediately Before the Dobbs Decision Through March 2023

  1. Alabama-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 22 weeks’ gestation [v] *#(In effect until 6/24/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- Life at conception law [vi] *^×µ (In effect 6/24/22-present)
  2. Alaska-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No gestational limit
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  3. Arizona-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- Viability [vii] *#×µ (In effect until 9/22/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- Life at conception law [viii] *# (In effect 9/23/22-10/7/22 when it was blocked)
      • 15 weeks’ gestation [ix] *×µ (In effect 9/24/22-present)
  4. Arkansas-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 22 weeks’ gestation [v] *#+&(In effect until 6/24/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- Life at conception law [xi] *×µ (In effect 6/24/22-present)
  5. California-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No effective limits [xii] ¥
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change [xiii]
  6. Colorado-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No gestational limit
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  7. Connecticut-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No effective limit [xiv] ¥
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  8. Delaware-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No effective limits [xv] ¥^×
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  9. Florida-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- Trimester/Viability hybrid model [xvi] *#× (In effect until 7/1/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- 15-week limit*#^× (In effect 7/1/22-7/5/22-present) [xvii]
      • Heartbeat law (6 weeks’ gestation) [xviii] *#+&@^ 
  10. Georgia-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 22 weeks’ gestation [xix] ^*#~×µ In effect until 7/20/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- Heartbeat law [xx] *#+&^× (In effect 7/20/22-11/15/22 when it was blocked, back in effect 11/23/22-present)
      • 22 weeks gestation [xxi] ^*#~×µ (In effect 11/15/22-11/23/22)
  11. Hawaii-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No effective limits [xxii] ¥
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  12. Idaho-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- Viability (25 weeks’ gestation) [xxiii] *^ (In effect until 8/19/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- Heartbeat law [xxiv] *+& (In effect 8/19/22-present) [xxv]
      • Life at conception law*+& (In effect 8/25/22-present)
  13. Illinois-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No effective limits [xxvi] ¥×
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change [xxvii]
  14. Indiana-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 22 weeks’ gestation [xxviii] ~*#^¶× (In effect until 9/15/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decisionLife at conception law [xxix] *#^+&× (In effect from 9/15/22-9/22/22 when it was blocked)
      • 22 weeks’ gestation~*#^¶× (In effect 9/22/22-present)
  15. Iowa-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 22 weeks’ gestation [xxx] *#×
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  16. Kansas-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 22 weeks’ gestation [xxxi] ~*#× 
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  17. Kentucky-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 22 weeks’ gestation [xxxii] *#~× (In effect until 6/24/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- Life at conception law [xxxiii] *#× and heartbeat law [xxxiv] (Both in effect from 6/24/22-6/30/22 when it was blocked, then back in effect 8/1/22-present)
      • 22 weeks’ gestation*#~× (In effect from 6/30/22-7/14/22)
      • 15 weeks’ gestation*#× (In effect from 7/14/22-8/1/22)
  18. Louisiana-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 22 weeks gestation [xxxv] *#^~×µ (In effect until 6/24/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- Life at conception law [xxxvi] *#^×µ (In effect from 6/24/22-6/27/22 when it was blocked, back in effect 7/8/22-7/12/22 when it was blocked again, then back in effect 7/29/22-present)
      • 22 weeks’ gestation*#^~×µ (In effect from 6/27/22-7/8/22, then 7/12/22-7/29/22)
  19. Maine-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No effective limits [xxxvii] ¥×
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  20. Maryland-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No effective limits [xxxviii] ¥^
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  21. Massachusetts-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No effective limits [xxxix] ¥^×
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  22. Michigan-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No effective limits [xl] ¥
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change [xli]
  23. Minnesota
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No gestational limit [xlii] 
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  24. Mississippi-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 20 weeks’ gestation [xliii] *#^~× (In effect until 7/7/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- Life at conception law [xliv] *+× (In effect from 7/7/22-present)
  25. Missouri-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- Viability [xlv] (In effect until 6/24/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- Life at conception law [xlvi] *#× (In effect from 6/24/22-present)
  26. Montana-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision-Viability [xlvii] *#×
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  27. Nebraska-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 22 weeks gestation [xlviii] ~*#×
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change (until 5/22/23)
      • 12 weeks’ gestation [xlix] *#ϴ×µ (In effect from 5/22/23-present)
  28. Nevada-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 24 weeks’ gestation [l]
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  29. New Hampshire
    1. Pre­-Dobbs decision- 24 weeks gestation [li] *#^×µ
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  30. New Jersey-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No gestational limit
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  31. New Mexico-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No gestational limit
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  32. New York-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No effective limits [lii]
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  33. North Carolina-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- Viability [liii] *# (In effect until 8/17/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- 20 weeks’ gestation [liv] *#× (In effect from 8/17/22-7/1/23)
      • 12 weeks’ gestation [lv] *#+&^×µ (In effect 7/1/23-present)
  34. North Dakota-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 22 weeks’ gestation [lvi] ~*#¶×µ
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change [lvii] (In effect from 6/24/22-4/23/23)
      • Life at conception law [lviii] *#+& (In effect from 4/24/23-present)
  35. Ohio-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 22 weeks’ gestation [lix] ~*#¶× (In effect until 6/24/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- Heartbeat law [lx] *#× (In effect from 6/24/22-9/14/22 when it was indefinitely blocked)
      • 22 weeks gestation~*#¶× (In effect from 9/14/22-present)
  36. Oklahoma-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision-2022 Heartbeat law [lxi] *#µ× (In effect 5/3/22-present)
      • 2022 Life at conception law (HB 4327) [lxii] *+ɵ&×µ (In effect 5/25/22-8/25/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- 1910 life at conception law [lxiii] * (In effect from 6/24/22-8/25/22, 3/21/23-present)
      • 2022 life at conception law [lxiv] *×µ (In effect from 8/25/22-3/21/23)
  37. Oregon
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No gestational limit
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  38. Pennsylvania-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 24 weeks gestation [lxv] *#¶
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  39. Rhode Island-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No effective limits [lxvi] ¥×
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  40. South Carolina-
    1. Pre­-Dobbs decision- 22 weeks’ gestation [lxvii] ~*#^× (In effect until 6/27/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- 2021 heartbeat law [lxviii] *#^+&× (In effect from 6/27/22-8/17/22 when it was blocked)
      • 22 weeks’ gestation~*#^× (In effect from 8/17/22-5/25/23, 5/26/23-present)
      • 2023 heartbeat law [lxix] *#+&^×µ (In effect from 5/25/23-5/26/23)
  41. South Dakota-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 22 weeks’ gestation [lxx] *#~ (In effect until 6/24/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- Life at conception law [lxxi] * (In effect from 6/24/22-present)
  42. Tennessee-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- Viability (24 weeks gestation) [lxxii] *#× (In effect until 6/28/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- Heartbeat law [lxxiii] *#× (In effect from 6/28/22-present)
      • Life at conception law [lxxiv] *#× (In effect from 8/25/22-present)
  43. Texas-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- Heartbeat law [lxxv]  π×µ (In effect until 6/24/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- 1925 life at conception law [lxxvi] * (In effect from 6/24/22-6/28/22 when it was blocked, back in effect 7/1/22-present)
      • Heartbeat lawπ×µ (In effect from 6/28/22-7/1/22)
      • 2021 life at conception law [lxxvii] *#×µ (In effect from 8/25/22-present)
  44. Utah-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- Viability [lxxviii] *#^+&×µ (In effect until 6/24/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- Life at conception law [lxxix] *#^+&×µ (In effect from 6/24/22-6/27/22 when it was blocked)
      • 18 weeks’ gestation [lxxx] *#^×µ (In effect from 6/28/22-present)
  45. Vermont-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No gestational limit
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  46. Virginia-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- Third trimester [lxxxi]
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  47. Washington-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No effective limits [lxxxii] ¥
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  48. West Virginia-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 22 weeks’ gestation [lxxxiii] *#^~ (In effect until 6/24/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- 1848 life at conception law [lxxxiv] * In effect from 6/24/22-7/18/22 when it was blocked) [lxxxv]
      • 22 weeks’ gestation*#^~ (In effect from 7/18/22-9/13/22)
      • 2022 life at conception [lxxvi] *#^&×µ (In effect from 9/13/22-present)
  49. Wisconsin-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- 22 weeks’ gestation [lxxxvii] *#~× (In effect until 6/24/22)
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- Life at conception law [lxxxviii] * (In effect from 6/24/22-present) (lxxxix)
  50. Wyoming-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No effective limits [xc] ¥ (In effect until 7/27/22)
      • Life at conception law [xci] *#&ɵ
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change
  51. District of Columbia-
    1. Pre-Dobbs decision- No gestational limit
    2. Post-Dobbs decision- No change

Figure 1 Legend. Exceptions to Gestational Limit Laws According to State Laws

The law prohibits abortion except for the following circumstances:

*=If the pregnancy presents a risk to the life of the mother

#= If the pregnancy presents a risk of substantial physical harm to the mother (irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function of the pregnant woman).

^= If the unborn child is determined [by a healthcare professional] to have a lethal fetal anomaly

+= If the pregnant woman or girl was a victim of rape (no age specified)

&= If the pregnant woman or girl was a victim of incest (no age specified)

@= If the pregnant woman or girl was a victim of human trafficking (no age specified)

ɵ= If the pregnant woman or girl was a victim of sexual assault

¥= While the language of the law limits abortion after viability, the law contains a broad health (life and health of the mother) exception that doesn’t differentiate between physical and mental health which, in turn, allows abortion throughout pregnancy for nearly any reason, on demand.

€= While the language of the law limits abortion after 24 weeks’ gestation, the law contains a broad health (life and health of the mother) exception that doesn’t differentiate between physical and mental health which, in turn, allows abortion throughout pregnancy for nearly any reason, on demand.

◊= While the language of the law limits abortion after the second trimester, the law contains a broad health (life and health of the mother) exception that doesn’t differentiate between physical and mental health which, in turn, allows abortion throughout pregnancy for nearly any reason, on demand.

µ= The law excludes ectopic pregnancy from the definition of abortion.

×= The law excludes natural miscarriage from the definition of abortion.

¶= The state requires a second attending physician to attend an abortion that takes place after the state’s gestational limit. Minnesota’s requires a second attending physician for abortions that take place after 20 weeks’ gestation.

π= For a medical emergency (undefined)

~= When the gestational limit is based on the science of fetal pain, either the title of the law contains the words “pain capable” or a variation of that phrase and/or the legislative findings section of the bill that became a law cites the science of fetal pain.

Figure 1. Key Terms

  • The term “federal standard of viability” refers to the time period laid out in the Roe opinion, “Viability is usually placed at about seven months (28 weeks) but may occur earlier, even at 24 weeks.” Consequently, states with viability limits that do not set specific gestational limits use this federal standard and consider 24-28 weeks’ gestation to encompass viability despite current science that marks it earlier.
  • Heartbeat laws refer to laws requiring abortionists to check for the unborn child’s heartbeat before performing an abortion and, consequently, prohibit abortion if the abortionist detects the child’s heartbeat (with prohibited delineations in place for medical emergencies, etc.). A baby’s heartbeat can often be detected as early as six gestational weeks (four weeks after conception/fertilization).
  • Life at conception laws prohibit all abortions except in the cases where delineated exceptions, set out by state law, are applicable.

Conclusion

Due to the impact of the pandemic, FDA regulatory changes, and the Dobbs decision on abortion, 2021, 2022, and the years following may prove to reflect the greatest change in abortion incidence in the United States since Roe v. Wade in 1973. Simultaneously, the spread of abortion-by-mail will likely render U.S. abortion data increasingly inaccurate and unreliable. As Americans make decisions on abortion policy through their elected leaders or via referenda, the need for valid and current data is greater than ever. The least the federal government can do is mandate the securing of accurate and timely abortion statistics from all states to ensure that Americans can make fully informed policy choices.

 

Mia Steupert, M.A. is a research associate for Charlotte Lozier Institute. Tessa Longbons is a senior research associate for Charlotte Lozier Institute.


[i] The latest updates may be found at Charlotte Lozier Institute’s State Abortion Reporting page, available at https://lozierinstitute.org/state-abortion-reporting/.

[ii] These states include Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.

[iii] These 10 states include (and the corresponding number of abortions that occurred in the state per 2020 Guttmacher estimates):  California (154,060), New York (110,360), Florida (77,400), Texas (58,020), Illinois (52,780), New Jersey (48,830), Georgia (41,620), Pennsylvania (32,260), North Carolina (31,850), and Michigan (31,500),

[iv] Georgia’s online vital statistics portal does not specify the types of abortion procedures used.

[v] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in ALA. Admin. Code §26-23B 1-9.

[vi] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in ALA. Admin. Code §26-23H 1-8.

[vii] The state’s statute code, A.R.S. §36-2301.01, didn’t define viability in gestational weeks and followed the federal standard of viability per a mandate by the Isaacson v. Horne (2013) decision. The law stated that the term viable fetus means “the unborn offspring of human beings that has reached a stage of fetal development so that, in the judgment of the attending physician on the particular facts of the case, there is reasonable probability of the fetus’ sustained survival outside the uterus, with or without artificial support.” The law’s exception language can be found in the same statute.

[viii] The statute’s prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §13-3603. In late October 2022, then Attorney General Mark Brnovich agreed not to enforce the life at conception law until 2023. However, Brnovich was defeated in Arizona’s November 2022 attorney general election and in late December 2022 an appellate panel of judges ruled that abortionists can’t be prosecuted under the pre-Roe law (1864) law, effectively rendering the law unenforceable and designating the state’s 15-week law as the law of the state. While the pre-Roe law was not repealed from the statute code, newly elected Democratic Governor Katie Hobbs claimed that the pre-Roe law was struck down and newly elected Attorney General Kris Mayes vowed to defend abortions in the state and not enforce the 1864 law.

[ix] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §36-2321 to 2326.

[x] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Ark. Code Ann. §20-16-1401 to 1405.

[xi] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Ark. Code Ann §5-61-304.

[xii]  The state’s statute code, Cal Health & Safety Code §123466, doesn’t define viability in gestational weeks and follows the federal standard of viability. The exceptions language can be found in the same statute and in California’s Proclamation on Reproductive Freedom.

[xiii] On November 8, 2022, California voters approved a ballot measure that enshrines a right to abortion in the state constitution, effectively leaving the door open for women to have abortions at any point in their pregnancy if a party challenges the state’s viability law and successfully overturns the law using the ballot measure as legal justification.

[xiv] The state’s statute code doesn’t define viability in gestational weeks and follows the federal standard of viability. However, recently published state resources define viability as 24 weeks’ gestation. A 2018 summary of the state’s abortion laws published by the Office of Legislative Research also didn’t specify in gestational weeks what viability means.  Connecticut Agencies Regs § 19-13-D54 states that abortions in the third trimester are not allowed except when necessary to preserve the life or health of the mother but makes no mention of abortions after viability being synonymous with third-trimester abortions.

[xv] The state’s statute code, 24-17-1- §1702, doesn’t define viability in gestational weeks and follows the federal standard of viability. The code defines viability as “the point in the pregnancy when, in a physician’s good faith medical judgment based on the factors of a patient’s case, there is reasonable likelihood of the fetus’s sustained survival outside the uterus without the application of extraordinary medical measures.”

[xvi] A 1976 law in Florida used to prohibit all third-trimester abortions which the state considered to start in the 24th week of pregnancy, per the state’s statute code, Fla. Stat. §390.011. Under a 2014 law, that statute code was amended to prohibit abortion if the unborn child achieved viability before the third trimester, abortion was not permitted unless one (in the case of an emergency) or two physicians deemed the unborn child to be a substantial risk to the mother’s life or health. In April 2022, the state replaced the 2014 third-trimester/ viability hybrid model with a 15-week prohibition, but it did not go into effect until July 2022.

[xvii] The law was blocked for a few hours on July 5, 2022, but was back in effect by the end of the day.

[xviii] This bill, SB 300, was introduced in the Florida legislature in early March 2023 and was signed into law by Governor Ron DeSantis on April 13, 2023. The law does not go into effect until 30 days after: the Florida Supreme Court decides that the right to privacy clause (S. 23, Article 1) in the Florida state constitution doesn’t encompass a right to an abortion; a decision by the Florida Supreme Court in Planned Parenthood v. State that allows the state’s 15-week abortion prohibition to remain in effect; an amendment to the state constitution’s privacy clause that explicitly states the clause does not confer a right to an abortion; or a decision by the Florida Supreme Court in three cases relating to abortion and the state constitution’s privacy clause (In re T.W. 1989, North Fla. Women’s Health v.  State 2003, Gainesville Woman Care, LLC v. State 2017). The fetal anomaly exception applies to pregnancies that have not progressed to the third trimester and the rape, incest, and sex trafficking exception applies to pregnancies that have not progressed more than 15 weeks’ gestation. Victims of rape, incest, and human trafficking “must provide a copy of a restraining order, police report, medical record, or other court order or documentation providing evidence that she is obtaining the termination of pregnancy because she is a victim of rape, incest, or human trafficking. If the victim is an adult, the abortionist must report the crime to a local law enforcement agency. If the victim is a minor, the abortionist must report the crime to the central abuse hotline described in s. 39.201.

[xix] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in O.C.G.A. §16-12-140-141.

[xx] Georgia’s rape and incest exception applies only to pregnancies that are less than or at 20 weeks’ gestation and when police reports have been filed by the victim. The prohibition language can be found in O.C.G.A. §16-12-141 and the exceptions language can be found in O.C.G.A. §31-9B-1 and §31-9A-2.

[xxi] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in O.C.G.A. §16-12-140-141.

[xxii] The state’s statute code (Haw. Rev. Stat. Ann. §453-16) doesn’t define fetal viability in gestational weeks and the state follows the federal standard of fetal viability.

[xxiii] Idaho Code §18-604 indirectly defines viability by defining second trimester of pregnancy, after which a 1973 Idaho law limited abortions to 25 weeks gestation (until 8/19/22). The code defines viability as “that portion of pregnancy following the thirteenth week and preceding the point in time when the fetus becomes viable, and there is hereby created a legal presumption that the second trimester does not end before the commencement of the twenty-fifth week of pregnancy…” The exceptions language for this law can be found in Idaho Code §18-608.

[xxiv] Idaho’s Heartbeat (Idaho Code 18-8804) and abortion prohibition (Idaho Code 18-622) laws contains rape and incest exceptions in the case that the victim has reported the act of rape or incest to a law enforcement agency and provided a copy of the police report to the abortionist.

[xxv] Idaho’s life at conception limit is more limiting and therefore takes precedence over the fetal heartbeat law. However, the civil enforcement mechanism within the heartbeat law remains effective. On January 5, 2023, the Idaho Supreme Court ruled that both laws are constitutional and in effect.

[xxvi] The state’s statute code (Ill. Rev. Stat. chg. 775 §55) doesn’t define fetal viability in gestational weeks and the state follows the federal standard of fetal viability. The statute also notes that viability can be determined by a medical professional in each case. The law defines viability as when, “in the professional judgement of the attending health care professional, based on the particular facts of the case, there is a significant likelihood of a fetus’ sustained survival outside the uterus without the application of extraordinary medical measures.” While the state had allowed abortions up until viability using the federal standard of viability laid out in the Roe ruling, not because of state legislation dictating so, the right to an abortion before viability was codified into state law on June 12, 2019, when the state’s Reproductive Privacy Act went into effect.

[xxvii] Illinois’ viability law is weak in its enforcement because of the 2019 Reproductive Health Act that was signed by Governor J.B. Pritzker. While no parties have brought a suit to date, the 2019 law could be used in court to argue for striking down the state’s viability law.

[xxviii] The law, IC 16-34-2-1 to 16-34-2-3, specifically states that abortion is prohibited before the earlier of viability of the fetus or 20 weeks’ postfertilization (22 weeks’ gestation).

[xxix] Indiana’s prohibition and exceptions language can be found in the same statute code noted in the above footnote even though they are two different laws. The rape and incest exceptions for this law apply to pregnancies before 10 weeks’ gestation and the lethal fetal anomaly exception only applies to pregnancies before 20 weeks’ gestation.

[xxx] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Iowa Code §146B.2.

[xxxi] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Kansas Code 65-6724.

[xxxii] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. §311.781 to 786. This law was amended in March 2022 to bring the gestational limit down to 15 weeks’ gestation and the language for this law can be found in Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann §311.782.

[xxxiii] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. §311.772.

[xxxiv] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. §311.7705.

[xxxv] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in LA RS 40:1061.1.2.

[xxxvi] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in LA RS 40:1061.

[xxxvii] The state’s statute code, 22 M.R.S. §1598, doesn’t define viability in gestational weeks and the state follows the federal standard of viability. The state’s code defines viability as “the state of fetal development when the life of the fetus may be continued indefinitely outside the womb by natural or artificial life-supportive systems.” However, an official document published by the Office of the Maine Attorney General and last updated in July 2022, claims that viability in Maine typically means 24-28 weeks, “as determined on a case-by-case basis by [a] health care provider.” Furthermore, that same document differs from the state’s official statute code in that it claims that Maine law allows for exceptions to its viability restrictions for pregnancies with a fatal fetal diagnosis in addition to pregnancies that risk the life or health of the mother, while the statute code only lists the life and health of the mother as exceptions to the viability restrictions.

[xxxviii] The state’s health code, Md. Health-General code Ann. §20-209, doesn’t define viability in gestational weeks and follows the federal standard of viability. The code defines viability as “[the] stage when, in the best clinical judgement of the qualified provider based on the particular facts of the case before the qualified provider, there is a reasonable likelihood of the fetus’s sustained survival outside the womb.” The exceptions language can be found in the aforementioned statute code.

[xxxix] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Mass Code Title 16 Section 12N.

[xl] After Roe v. Wade was decided in January 1973, a Michigan court decided in People v. Bricker (1973) that a physician may not perform an abortion in Michigan after viability except “where necessary, in his medical judgement, to preserve the life or health of the mother.” This meant that the state’s 1931 prohibition on abortion could not apply to pregnancies before viability but that it could limit abortions after viability, as Roe v. Wade laid out. However, because the court did not define health, the health exception could be used to justify any abortion after viability.

[xli] While Michigan had a pre-Roe law on the books, as it was not repealed by implication (People v. Higuera), that would have prohibited abortions in all cases except where the life of the mother was endangered, in May 2022, the Michigan Court of Claims placed a preliminary injunction on the law meaning that it would not go into effect until a legal decision was made. The law never went into effect when Roe v. Wade was reversed on June 24, 2022. On September 7, 2022, a Michigan Court declared that the 1931 abortion prohibition was unconstitutional and not enforceable. Following the passage of Michigan’s November 2022 ballot measure, the 1931 law was overturned and on December 24, 2022 the ballot measure took effect. The ballot measure was added to the state constitution and notes that the state may continue to regulate abortion after fetal viability except if abortion “is medically indicated to protect the life or physical or mental health of the pregnant individual.” This doesn’t change anything about the existing law as the health exception was already undefined and broad enough to allow abortions for any reason under the health exception, per the Bricker case. The addition to the constitution defines fetal viability as “the point in pregnancy when, in the professional judgement of an attending health care professional and based on the particular facts of the case, there is a significant likelihood of the fetus’s sustained survival outside the uterus without the application of extraordinary medical measures.”

[xlii] The law, Minn. Chapter 177-S.F. No. 498, didn’t define viability in gestational weeks but defined it as “able to live outside the womb even though artificial aid may be required. During the second half of its gestation period a fetus shall be considered potentially viable.”  There is a debate among legal experts if the viability restrictions that were on the books before the 1976 Hodgson v. Lawson decision are enforceable because the decision held that the Minnesota statute detailing restrictions on post-viability abortions was unconstitutional. The court ruled that because Minn. Stat. §145.411 included, and still does, the language, “potentially viable” it was unconstitutional, in conflict with the Roe v. Wade decision, and that the state couldn’t limit pre-viability abortions. A district court had reasoned out and equated the phrase “potentially viable” during the second half of the gestation period to mean 20 weeks’ gestation. Because Roe v. Wade was overturned in June 2022, there is now a revived and ongoing debate as to whether or not Minnesota law prohibits post-viability abortions, but in a plain reading of Minn. Stat. §145.412, one would see that the state considers its viability restrictions to be void.

[xliii] The exceptions language for Mississippi’s 20-week law can be found in the Mississippi statute code §41-41-141.

[xliv] Under Mississippi state law, Miss. Code Ann. §41-41-45, “rape shall be an exception to the prohibition for an abortion only if a formal charge of rape has been filed with an appropriate law enforcement official.”

[xlv] This law, §188.030 R.S. Mo., doesn’t define viability in gestational weeks. In statute code §188.015 R.S. Mo. viability is defined as “that stage of fetal development when the life of the unborn child may be continued indefinitely outside the womb by natural or artificial life-supportive systems.”

[xlvi] The prohibition language can be found in §188.017 R.S. Mo. and the exceptions language can be found in §188.015 R.S. Mo.

[xlvii] The state’s statute code, 50-20-104 MCA, doesn’t define viability in gestational age, and follows the federal standard of viability. The state defines viability “as the ability of a fetus to live outside the mother’s womb, albeit with artificial aid.” The exceptions language can be found in 50-20-113 MCA.

[xlviii] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Nebraska Revised Statutes 28-3, 106.

[xlix] Nebraska’s 12-week law was introduced in the Nebraska unicameral legislature in January 2023 and was signed into law by Governor Pillen on May 22, 2023. The law went into effect immediately.

[l] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Nevada Revised Statutes 442.250.

[li] The statute’s prohibition and exception language can be found in New Hampshire Statute 329:43-44. This statute was updated on May 27, 2022, to include a lethal fetal anomaly exception.

[lii] This law, originally passed in 1970, permitted abortions “within twenty-four weeks from the commencement of pregnancy or (after if) there is an absence of fetal viability…” was amended in 2019 to include a general health exception that effectively allows abortion on demand, up until birth. The most recent version of the law can be found in New York Public Health Ch. 45, Article 25-A.

[liii] In 1973, shortly after the Roe v. Wade decision, North Carolina passed a 20-week gestational limit that only allowed abortion after that gestational limit in the case where the life or health of the mother was endangered. While some speculated that the law was unenforceable because of the prohibition on what were considered pre-viability restrictions set out in Roe, the courts have noted that the law was in effect once it was passed. The law was in effect even though the court had not found an abortionist who had been prosecuted under the law since its passage in 1973 (Bryant v. Woodall, 2019). In 2015, the North Carolina legislature amended the exception to this law and changed it from “life and health of the mother” to an exception for medical emergencies which included instances where the mother’s life or physical health was endangered by her pregnancy. In 2019, a district court in North Carolina reversed the same court’s decision in 2018 and struck down the law as unconstitutional and in violation of the prohibition on pre-viability restrictions set out in Casey v. Planned Parenthood (1992). The court’s decision in 2019 held that the law was unconstitutional as it applied to pre-viability abortions but that the state could continue to restrict post-viability abortions. However, the court specifically noted that viability “does not occur at a fixed number of weeks after the pregnancy begins but rather is determined individually in each case by a doctor.” The 2019 decision was reaffirmed in 2021 by a Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals but was overturned in 2022 (on August 17, 2022) after Roe v. Wade was overturned in June 2022 (Bryant v. Woodall, 2022).

[liv] The prohibition language can be found in North Carolina Statute Code, §14-45.1 and the exceptions language/definition of medical emergency can be found in North Carolina Statute Code, §90-21.81.

[lv] North Carolina’s 12-week law, North Carolina Statute Code, §90-21.81A, was introduced in January 2023 and became law when the North Carolina legislature overruled Governor Roy Cooper’s veto of the bill on May 16, 2023. This law repeals North Carolina Statute Code §14-45.1. It went into effect on July 1, 2023. The exceptions language can be found in North Carolina Statute Code §90-21.81B. The rape and incest exceptions only apply to pregnancies before 21 weeks gestation and the fetal anomaly exception only applies to pregnancies before 25 weeks gestation.

[lvi] The prohibition language can be found in North Dakota Statute Code 14-02.1-05.3. The exceptions language can be found in North Dakota Statute Code 14-02.1-02.

[lvii] North Dakota’s trigger law, passed in 2007, was supposed to go into effect on July 28, 2022  following the reversal of Roe v. Wade in June 2022. However, the law was blocked on July 27, 2022 and then again on August 25, 2022, three days before the original injunction was supposed to expire and the law was set to go into effect. On March 16, 2023, the North Dakota Supreme Court upheld the lower court’s decision to block the 2007 trigger law. This decision is not the final decision in the case and litigation continues.

[lviii] This legislation, SB 2150, was introduced in the North Dakota legislature in January 2023 and became law on April 24, 2023, when North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum signed it into law. The law was effective immediately upon the governor’s signature. The law’s rape and incest exceptions only apply to pregnancies with an unborn child of six weeks’ gestation or less.

[lix] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Ohio Revised Code Title 29, Section 2919.201.

[lx] The prohibition language can be found in Ohio Revised Code Title 29, Section 2919.193. The exceptions language can be found in Ohio Revised Code Title 29, Section 2919.16.

[lxi] This legislation was signed into law by Governor Kevin Stitt on May 3, 2022 and went into effect immediately. This law is enforced by civil lawsuits rather than criminal prosecution and is very similar to Texas’ heartbeat law that went into effect in September 2021. The exceptions language can be found in 63 Okla. St. §1-745.31, .33.

[lxii] Oklahoma was the only state before the Dobbs decision on June 24, 2022, that successfully prohibited abortions from the moment of conception. Oklahoma’s prohibition law, enforced by civil lawsuits rather than criminal prosecution, was signed by Governor Kevin Stitt in April 2022 and took effect on May 25, 2022 through August 25, 2022, when Senate Bill 612 took effect. The rape and incest exceptions included in this statute only apply in cases where the victim of sexual assault, rape or incest reported the crime to the appropriate law enforcement agencies.

[lxiii] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Oklahoma Statute Code §21-862. This law was triggered into effect by SB 918 which passed in 2021 and amended by SB 1055, passed in 2022.

[lxiv] Senate Bill 612, passed in April 2022, prohibits abortion from the moment of conception and enhances the penalties for those who violate the prohibition on abortions except in cases where the life of the mother is in danger.  This law was declared unconstitutional by the Oklahoma Supreme Court on March 21, 2023 because the court said its medical emergency exception was too narrow and did not explicitly include a life-of-the-mother exception (Oklahoma Call for Reproductive Justice et al. v. Drummond et al., 2023).

[lxv] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Pennsylvania Statute Code Title 18, §3211.

[lxvi] The state’s statute code, R.I. Gen. Laws §23-4.12-2, includes the law’s prohibition and exceptions language. The law doesn’t define viability in gestational weeks or at all and follows the federal standard of viability.

[lxvii] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in South Carolina Statute Code 44-41-450.

[lxviii] The life and physical health exceptions language can be found in S.C. Code Ann. §44-41-690. The rape and incest as well as the fetal anomaly exceptions language can be found in S.C. Code Ann. §44-41-680. The rape and incest exceptions only apply to pregnancies less than 22 weeks’ gestation. Furthermore, the abortionist must report the crimes of rape and incest no later than 24 hours after performing the abortion on a pregnant woman who had an abortion under the law’s rape and incest exceptions. The  fetal anomaly and life of the mother exceptions apply to pregnancies past 22 weeks’ gestation.

[lxix] South Carolina’s heartbeat law, S.C. Code Ann. §44-41-630B, was introduced in the South Carolina legislature in February 2023 and was signed into law by Governor McMaster on May 25th, 2023. The law went into effect immediately upon signage by the governor, but it was blocked the next day by a circuit judge and is not in effect while litigation continues. The exceptions language for the law can be found in S.C. Code Ann §44-41-610, 640, and 650. The rape and incest exceptions only apply to pregnancies before 13 weeks gestation.

[lxx] The prohibition language can be found in South Dakota Statute Code 34-23A-69. The exceptions language can be found in South Dakota Statute Code 34-23A-72.

[lxxi] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in South Dakota Statute Code 22-17-5.1.

[lxxii] This prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Tenn. Code Ann. §39-15-211. This law requires viability testing after the 20th gestational week and prohibits abortion if the child is viable or if the pregnancy is past 24 weeks’ gestation, whichever comes first (Tenn. Code Ann. §39-15-212).

[lxxiii] Sections 216 and 217 of legislation prohibiting abortion at varying gestational ages from six weeks (when the embryonic heartbeat can be detected) to 24 weeks gestation (6,8,10,12,15,18,20,21,22,23, and 24) signed by Governor Bill Lee was blocked from taking effect on July 13, 2020. Therefore, the state’s viability prohibition was in effect until June 28, 2022 when a judge vacated the preliminary injunction mentioned above and allowed the heartbeat legislation to go into effect. Tennessee’s prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Tenn. Code Ann. §39-15-216.

[lxxiv] This trigger law was passed in 2019 but would only become effective “on the thirtieth day following the occurrence of either of the following circumstances… The issuance of the judgement in any decision of the United States Supreme Court overruling, in whole or in part, Roe v. Wade…or adoption of an amendment to the United States Constitution that, in whole or in part, restores to the states their authority to prohibit abortion.” Tennessee’s prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Tenn. Code Ann. §39-15-213.

[lxxv] The prohibitions language can be found in Tex. Health & Safety Code Ann. §171.203 and exceptions language can be found in Tex. Health & Safety Code Ann. §171.205.

[lxxvi] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in the 1925 Texas Penal Code on pages 277-278.

[lxxvii] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Title 2, Subtitle H Chapter 170A.001-007, of the Texas Health Safety Code.

[lxxviii] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Utah Code Ann. §76-7-302.

[lxxix]   In order for an abortion to be performed in Utah, in the case of lethal fetal anomaly, two maternal fetal medicine physicians must concur in writing that the fetus has a lethal anomaly or a “severe brain abnormality that is uniformly diagnosable.” The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Utah Statute Code 76-7a-201.

[lxxx]  This law was passed in 2019 but did not go into effect until Roe v. Wade was reversed. The original version of the law contained rape and incest exceptions, but they were removed with the passage of H.B. 467 into law in March 2023. In order for an abortion to be performed in Utah after the gestational limit set by law, in the case of lethal fetal anomaly, two maternal fetal medicine physicians must concur in writing that the fetus has a lethal anomaly or a “severe brain abnormality that is uniformly diagnosable.” The prohibition language can be found in Utah Statute Code 76-7-302.5. The exceptions language can be found in Utah Statute Code 76-7-302 which has not been changed to reflect the most recent March 2023 alterations.

[lxxxi] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Virginia Statute Code §18.2-74.

[lxxxii] The state’s statute code, Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) §9.02.110, contains the law’s prohibition and exceptions language and doesn’t define viability in gestational weeks and follows the federal standard of viability. The code (§.170) defines viability as “the point in the pregnancy when, in the judgement of the physician… there is a reasonable likelihood of the fetus’s sustained survival outside the uterus without the application of extraordinary medical measures.”

[lxxxiii] The prohibition and exceptions language for this law can be found in West Virginia Statute Code §16-2M-4.

[lxxxiv] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in West Virginia Statute Code §61-2-8.

[lxxxv] There was confusion on the part of the state’s sole abortion provider, Women’s Health Center, who stopped abortion services on June 24, 2022 (the day that Roe v. Wade was reversed) because the center believed that  the state’s pre-Roe abortion prohibition law was now in effect as it was never repealed. On June 29, 2022, West Virginia Attorney General, Patrick Morrissey, released a clarifying memorandum to clear up the confusion around which abortion restrictions were in place. In the memo, Morrissey also called on the West Virginia legislature to pass new legislation “to avoid any potential variances among prohibitions…” The memo concluded that the 1849 law is “on the books and enforceable [at the discretion of local prosecutors].” This claim supports sound legal reasoning that the pre-Roe law immediately went into effect as soon as Roe v. Wade was reversed as the law contained no “springing provision” which would have required the attorney general to certify the ruling in order to “spring” the law into effect.

[lxxxvi] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in West Virginia Statute Code §16-2R-2-3. The prohibition went into effect immediately, except for the criminal penalties for doctors found in violation of the law, which went into effect 90 days after the original enforcement date (December 13, 2022). Furthermore, the law allows abortions in the cases of sexual assault and incest within the first eight weeks of pregnancy as long as the victim of the crime(s) reported the sexual assault or incest to a law enforcement agency and provided the report to the abortionist. The sexual assault and incest exceptions apply to minors within the first 14 weeks of pregnancy given the same conditions regarding reporting and an additional condition that the minor victim has received medical treatment for the sexual assault or incest.

[lxxxvii] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Wisconsin Statute Code 253.107.

[lxxxviii] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Wisconsin Statute Code 940.04.

[lxxxix] On June 28, 2022 the Wisconsin Governor, Tony Evers, and Attorney General, Josh Kaul, filed a lawsuit challenging the state’s 1858 law protecting life at conception. While the state is not enforcing the law, local attorneys have been able to enforce the law and abortion providers stopped performing abortions in the state.

[xc] The state’s statute code, Wyo. Stat. §35-6-103 contains the law’s prohibition and exceptions language but doesn’t define viability in gestational weeks and follows the federal standards of viability. The state defines viability as “that stage of human development when the embryo or fetus is able to live by natural or life-supportive systems outside the womb of the mother according to appropriate medical judgement.”

[xci] The prohibition and exceptions language can be found in Wyoming Stat. §35-6-102. This trigger law was passed in March 2022, and it would become effective five days after the governor certified that Roe v. Wade was reversed. As the springing provision required, Governor Gordon certified the Attorney General’s review, that Roe v. Wade was reversed, on July 22, 2022 meaning that the law would go into effect on July 27, 2022. The law was blocked hours before it was set to go into effect.

 

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