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Study says 2011 abortion rates lowest in 40 years

Abortion rates are lowest in 40 years
Abortion rates are lowest in 40 years
Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images

According to a study done by the Guttmacher Institute, a pro-abortion rights think tank, abortion rates are at their lowest rate in 40 years. CNN reported Feb. 2 that the study looks at the most recent data (from 2011) in determining that the U.S. abortion rate is the lowest its been since it was legalized in 1973.

The rate was 16.9 abortions per 1,000 women in the age range of 15 to 44.

The study notes that the drop in abortion also came at a time the nation was experiencing a drop in pregnancy, birth rates and an increase in contraceptive use. The drop is likely to have been cause by the recent recession, or at least contributed to it.

The study also noted that 2011 experienced the lowest pregnancy rate in 12 years. The take-away:

"Access to a range of birth control methods is playing an important role in reducing unintended pregnancy and decreasing the need for abortion," Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said in a statement.

President of the National Right to Life Committee, Carol Tobias, has a slightly different opinion. She says "The bottom line is simple: the right-to-life movement is succeeding because even after 41 years and more than 56 million abortions, the conscience of our nation knows that killing unborn children is wrong." She attributed the drop in abortions to legislative efforts made at the federal and state levels.

National Right To Life also released their own study that stated 3,000 unborn children are still killed every day