Top 10 Reasons Pro-Choice May Be Losing to Pro-Life Movement


Abortion in the United States is legal. In that context, it would seem ridiculous to argue that the ‘pro choice’ movement has been anything but successful. However, as you will see, over the years the more successful side in the ‘Abortion War’ has been the pro-life movement. Restrictions are rarely taken down once in place. The United States Congress has never come anywhere close to passing a comprehensive abortion law. Even though they have the ability, they tend to leave it up to the Supreme Court. In addition, the restrictions have gotten progressively more creative as well as effective. No matter what side of the debate you are on, you are going to want to see what is actually going near the front lines.

10. Increasingly Limited Access To Abortion Clinics


In North Dakota, South Dakota, Mississippi and Arkansas, there is only one clinic open in the entire state that performs abortions. In Mississippi particularly, there are efforts on the state level to even eliminate the Jackson Women’s Health Clinic. That means that women in rural areas of the state have to often travel hundreds of miles to receive the procedure. Steps taken in Mississippi according to Governor Phil Bryant are specifically designed to “the first step in a movement, I believe, to do what we campaigned on: to say that we’re going to try to end abortion in Mississippi.”

9. A Majority of Americans Support Some Abortion Restrictions


According to a Gallup Poll conducted in May of 2012, only 41 percent of Americans currently identify themselves as ‘pro-choice.’ Currently, a third of people who would identify themselves as Democrats also would identify themselves as ‘pro-life.’ Even more telling, over 50 percents of voters in the United States are for abortions ‘with some restrictions.’ Equally about 20 percent of the American population on either side would support either ‘no restrictions’ or would support abortion under ‘any circumstances.’ The uphill battle that abortion rights activists are facing is that the classic stance of allowing abortions with no restrictions advocated by the pro-choice movement is distasteful to fully fifty percent of the population consistently.

8. The “Hyde Amendment”


The Hyde Amendment is known as a ‘ride’ (a provision tacked onto a larger bill) in federal budgetary bills that specifically prohibits funding of abortions by the federal government. The ‘rider’ was first championed by Representative Henry Hyde of Illinois in 1976. The ‘Hyde Amendment’ has subsequently been approved in every approved budget afterwards. In theory, the Hyde Amendment would cease to exist if the language was simply not in the budget bill. That has not happened as to this date. Therefore, the Hyde Amendment is a de facto federal law that has to be extended yearly.

7. Executive Order 13535


During the debate on the law which would eventually become the Affordable Health Care Act in 2010, a significant number of Democrats in the House of Representatives refused to vote for the law without assurance that funding for abortion would not be part of the act. This led to the Stupak-Pitts Amendment proposed by Bart Stupak of Michigan. Essentially, the Stupak-Pitts Amendment would extend the Hyde Amendment to newly created Health Insurance Exchanges. The Senate version of the bill did not have such language in the bill. In order to get the support in the House, President Obama signed Executive Order 13535 to prevent any federally created insurance exchanges from funding abortions. The move was not popular with either pro-life or pro-choice groups. However, Executive Order 13535 is now within the implemented framework of the Affordable Health Care Act.

6. The ‘Todd Akin Victory’


During the 2012 elections, Missouri Senator Todd Akin made national news by indicating that the female body would shut down a potential pregnancy during a ‘legitimate rape.’ The comment was nationally panned. Ultimately, Akin lost the election and his seat in the Senate. Abortion rights activists heralded the victory as a modern statement for women’s as well as abortion rights. The problem? While Senator Claire McCaskill has put in support for pro-choice issues, she has never actually put forth any legislation and has been relatively quiet in her support. So while a vocal opponent of abortion was defeated, it is not like the winner has ever made it a primary issue either. Keep in mind, this is supposedly the biggest boost for the movement in years.

5. ‘Personhood’ Laws


At this point, ‘personhood’ referendums have failed in Colorado twice and in the state of Mississippi once. Essentially, the ‘Personhood’ laws would not outlaw abortion, but recognize the right of a fetus to be a person from the moment of conception. In Roe V. Wade, it was stated that a fetus was not a ‘person’ but a ‘potential life.’ By granting ‘personhood’ to a fetus, then an abortion could not be theoretically performed because it is a violation of that person’s human rights. It never says that abortion would be illegal, however the personhood laws would create an environment in which an abortion would be impossible. It would almost certainly be challenged which would lead to a present day Supreme Court having to either validate or invalidate the personhood status of a fetus. The next personhood battleground appears to be brewing in North Dakota.

 4. Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pa. Versus Casey


In 1982, Pennsylvania passed the Pennsylvania Abortion Control act of 1982. Five provisions of that act were challenged in court by the local chapter of Planned Parenthood. Those provisions included parental permission, a 24 hour waiting period, spousal notification, a requirement requiring doctors to inform women of the medical risks of abortions, and certain reporting mandates on abortion clinics. Ten years later, the case had worked its way all the way to the Supreme Court. The Court struck down the spousal notification, but upheld the other portions as not being an ‘undue restriction.’ This paved the way for other states to confidently pass laws including waiting periods, parental consent, and requiring medical professionals to notify the patients of health risks. In addition, the precedent was set to allow states to test other restrictions in new laws.

3. In-State Hospital Admitting Restrictions


A truly effective recent tactic in Tennessee and Mississippi to limiting abortions is new laws requiring doctors who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at local hospitals. Without the privileges, the doctors would be unable to perform abortions until such time as they had attained them. As a result of the law as well as the finances needed to mount a legal defense, the Volunteer Women’s Clinic in Knoxville, Tennessee (which had been in operation for 38 years) was forced to shut down. Many local hospitals in Mississippi are run by religious organizations. If it is entirely within the purview of a say a Catholic Hospital to grant privileges to an abortion doctor, then the chances of achieving those privileges severely dwindles. In Mississippi, the regulation has only been halted by a temporary court order.

2. Hospital Zoning Restrictions


In November of 2012, the state health board passed a resolution 13-2 that abortion clinics needed to be zoned as if they were new hospitals. The ruling technically does not restrict the ability of the doctors to provide abortions. It does impose regulations on the places in which abortions could be provided. Why could this possibly close some of the 20 clinics in Virginia currently providing abortions? Hallways. Yes, hallways. Virginia hospitals require that hallways be at least five feet wide in order to pass a hospital stretcher through, then the whole inside of the building would have to be redone or a new building would be needed. It does not provide an unreasonable impediment to the woman receiving an abortion under Roe V. Wade ans is therefore a convenient end run around to closing multiple abortion clinics. There is no specific requirement that a state has to have an operational abortion clinic. Therefore, in states with only one, the ability to provide abortions can be completely shut down without actually outlawing abortions.

1. Divisions Within The Feminist Movement


In the 1970s, Roe V. Wade was seen as one of the crowning achievements of the feminist movement. Memories of back alley abortions as well as the fight for the birth control pill were still fresh in women’s minds. Currently, the leaders of the movement in the 1970s do not present a face for the movement of women in their child bearing years. Younger women are eschewing established organizations such as the National Organization for Women or Planned Parenthood in favor of more nebulous social networking. Younger women are also not as likely to consider themselves to be ‘pro-choice’ as in support of ‘reproductive rights.’ In short, the generational divide is not presenting a unified front. The opinion of the pro-life movement largely has not shifted at all. Therefore, it has become easier over the decades for the pro-life movement (once considered to be dead) to mobilize without a significant plan of opposition.

Other Articles you Might Like
Liked it? Take a second to support on Patreon!


  1. they’re pro-life from conception until birth. they don’t care about actual living humans. I call them the pro birth crowd.

  2. Todd Akin was not a senator. He as a House member from Missouri. He challenged the incumbent – McCaskill – but was defeated in the election.

  3. jason stone on

    it seems fairly simple…abortion should be outlawed with exceptions to women’s health…that’s a no brainer if the mother could die during the pregnancy or childbirth…..or incest/sexual assault/rape…that does two things…it allows for each terrible sex crime committed that results in a pregnancy the opportunity to get terminated if the victim chooses…and also, if women knew they would have to carry the baby full-term with no other options…would that translate to more responsible choices by very sexually active females? it seems that most abortions happen simply because the expectant mothers simply do not want the babies…if that option no longer exists unless a crime has been committed, I’d like to think that women would at least think about what they are doing before doing it…maybe not…but it can’t hurt to put the legalities in place…it’s just my opinion and the solution that makes the most sense to me

    • I don’t think any woman would overthink it more then, simply because an abortion is allready an extremely emberassing, pain- and stressful situation nobody wants to be in. No woman on earth would say “Oh, I just can have an abortion later.”
      With your opinion you’re closing your eyes on the many, many social and psychological situations where an abortion can be nescessary. An example: A girl I knew decided against an abortion because she had a guarantee that a couple would adopt her child. That did not work out, she had to keep the baby. Her parents and the father claimed to support her, but in the end she was alone. – She killed the baby half a year later. Now, this happend in a country where an early abortion (up to three months) is possible. Imagine how often situations like these would appear with banning abortions.

      • Brother John on

        What an exception you’re illustrating. Since we’re talking of American society and law, if this scenario you’re describing took place elsewhere, it’s irrelevant. But, for the sake of argument, if someone agrees and then backs out, find another. There are loads of willing couples buried in red tape. There are churches all over this broad land who would take in and care for such a child. Either way, if she kills the child early or later, it’s a sign of sociopathy. This is not a case that should in any way influence policy.

        • It is quite irrelevent where this took place, since it could happen in the US just as well. And believe me, you can’t just place a child somewhere. You can only say this if you never tried. Finding a couple for adoption is a long and complicated process, especially for people with psychological problems. As long as you aren’t clinically insane and seen as a danger for the child, authorities won’t act either.
          Yes, this is exactly the case that should influence the policy! This is the classic case of a mother murdering her unwanted child, you can find this in literature and poetries going back centuries. This is how Faust I ends, for example. It’s not a single case, there are countless like these, not to forget the suicides of pregnant women.
          It is pretty clear that you don’t know what sociopathy is, so please stop using this word. It is also pretty clear that you make a difference between an early abortion and murder even you now say that it’s the same – because if it was the same for you, you also wouldn’t allow an abortion after rape or for medical reasons.

        • Brother John on

          Your first paragraph sort of makes my point. Many couples/families are willing to adopt, especially in instances where it saves a life. If this process is so complex, maybe it needs to be simplified, especially in the interests of saving lives.

          You cannot cite Faust, literature, poetry as evidence to make your case. You just can’t. You may use them to illustrate, but since they are fiction, they do not serve as evidence. A woman who kills her child is operating from a deeply disturbed point of view, there’s no getting around that; and an anecdote about one who does so because she was unable to (or lied to about) abort(ing) her child is a lousy way to shape public policy.

          Since you’re also FHM, I can respond here as well:

          My point about the “morning after” idea was simple – I have less a moral case to make against that sort of thing (although things which enable irresponsible behaviour are generally not good ideas — a different topic). But that should be a simple decision that has to be made -immediately-. There is no excuse for waiting, especially once you approach the point of viability, no matter what the circumstances. The “health of the mother” exception is always cited as a reason to terminate a pregnancy, but medically there isn’t any such thing. Once at the point of viability, if the mother’s life is threatened by continuing a pregnancy, you simply deliver the child – don’t chop it into pieces. It’s simply a made-up argument.

          Finally, I believe you’re coming round to my point of view about the impact abortion has on the future. If, since 1973, 40,000,000 abortions have been performed, then over time that will add up to a significant impact, especially when there is a sizable portion of the population who, over that time, simply delivered their children and then attempted to teach them not to make the same mistakes. The fact that homosexual couples do not create children, I think, would have a smaller impact than this over time.

    • Why does this come down to sexually active females and their responsibility, and tying that into incest and rape? IF a woman is forced into sex, it has nothing to do with how often she has sex. In any case, mistakes happen, as a point of fact, most women who have abortions are in their late twenties mid thirties, who have two children and are married. They are making hard choices due to the high cost of child rearing, and the decision involves partners and spouses.

      When a girl is brought up, conservatives don’t want her to get a full sex education to know about the means of getting pregnant, or other means of sexual enjoyment without penetration which leads to pregnancy, they don’t want to offer free contraceptives, and then they blame the woman for a pregnancy (which involves a male partner) even if the woman is forced.

      Really the issue here is about control of women, if conservatives cared about life, they would not sacrifice the mother for the fetus, they would also give aid to women who decide to bear the children. Because if you happen to be a single mother with a child, it’s not a brave or noble decision, you are a slut, and you are somehow responsible for all the woes of this world, including high taxes and unemployment.

      Time to make the fathers of children just as repsonsible as the mothers, if you will not give the mothers support, either way they choose.

      • WOW – if I were you, I’d not want to reveal such a shocking degree of ignorance. Your first paragraph is just plain false – most who seek abortions are young and BLACK. Besides which, economics is a flat-out evil reason to terminate a life. Next question.

        You clearly have no understanding of those you label as “conservatives,” either. Those of that particular persuasion would prefer to educate children for themselves, rather than having government agents show fourth-graders how to put on a condom. The past thirty years have seen such things result in a permissive atmosphere that results in greater promiscuity. The rest of that paragraph reveals that you believe self-control of any kind is to be avoided — go! seek ye thy pleasure, and abort later!

        Why should contraceptives be paid for by the public? That’s idiotic, asinine, and bad economics. If you want to be sexually active, go get your own contraceptives. Stop encouraging bad decision making and the evasion of responsibility.

        Finally, aid to women who decide to keep the child? Really, that’s more bad economics. We begin by making contraceptives free, in order to give the impression of consequence-free sex; then, when contraceptives are not used, since it’s not as fun that way, we end up with a pregnancy. That’s ok — just abort it! Oh, wait, you want to keep it? No worries — we’ve got John Q. Taxpayer on the hook to give you some money.

        You wonder why the black illegitimacy rate is over 73%? Why the illegitimacy rate overall is at 40%? It’s idiocy like this. Stay home, keep quiet, and don’t reproduce.

        • Congratulations on the most hateful, agressive and flatout wrong post in the whole discussion. I hope you are proud.

        • Just a minute here. *Arurens66* suggests that people abort impending children because they’re too expensive, and *I*’m the hateful one?

          Aurens66 would prefer that young girls engage in irresponsible behaviour, and I’m hateful?

          Aurens66 (and countless others) would put taxpayers on the hook to (a) enable these irresponsible decisions, and (b) pay for the results, be they abortion or child support, and I’m hateful?

          I am proud. My argument is driven by cold-eyed logic, not limp-wristed feelings; we know what people ought to do to avoid poverty and pathologies, yet to say so is “hateful.” If I’m wrong, then tell me where I’m wrong. Telling me I’m “hateful” is just pathetic.

  4. I support pro life for several reasons. first I’m mainly only for it in cases like rape or sexual assault or something like that were the women didnt want it. That means that more often then not the women would probly feel somewhat resentful to it when it would be born. Also it would help lower the rate of population growth which as we’ve seen in recent years is kind of growing out of control

    • “Also it would help lower the rate of population growth which as we’ve seen in recent years is kind of growing out of control”

      Wait, so you support having more people on the planet, because it will “lower the rate of population growth” I dont see the logic in this, could you explain?

      I think reading your comment that you meant to put “pro-choice” not “pro-life” otherwise what you said is pretty nonsensical.

    • Brother John on

      Wow. Resentful. This is what adoption is for – to prevent that resentment while at the same time trying to stay civilized – and a nation that pulls infants apart into bite-sized morsels has a very loose grip on civilization.

      Besides, the resentment and remorse tends to be more widespread amongst women who have taken the ‘choice’ route.

      This population out of control idea, though, is pure nonsense. We’ve been hearing this since Malthus and they’ve all been wrong. Birth rates are /falling/ in the more civilized nations and are rising elsewhere, but that ought not be our problem.

      • Adoption? So you think it would be right to force a woman to carry the child of her rapist for full nine month and have the child adopted? Do you have any idea what kind of psychological stress that woman would suffer from? The only thing you are doing with that is risking two lifes
        Furthermore, it’s complete rubbish to talk about pulling infants apart when talking about the rape scenario. A women that was raped will either get the “morning-after pill” if she arrives at a doctor soon enough, or otherwise have an abortion days later, some weeks at most. We are talking about an embryo here, not a fetus – and surely not an infant. If a woman waits for months after the incident, it either might be possible to question the rape scenario or otherwise assume that it might be possible for her to carry the child with some psychological support, since she had time to live with the tought. I think almost every country has a time limit for when an abortion is still possible.

        The population growth argument is nonsense, I agree.

        • Brother John on

          You misinterpret. I did not address the ‘morning-after’ pill; and I can’t find any particular objection to that scenario. However, those who describe themselves as ‘pro-choice’ insist that abortion stay legal not only from conception but right up past viability and birth, and frankly once you’ve gotten into the viability stage, there simply is no excuse. By then, you need to have made the choice to keep it or turn back. Once you’re talking viability, there isn’t a reason to terminate a pregnancy for the health of the mother. You simply deliver the child and then see that it grows and thrives. There is no medical reason to pull it apart – it’s all made up.

          But even if I were to suggest that a product of rape would be carried to term – which does happen – why would you punish the only innocent party in that scenario by chopping it up?

        • Ok, sorry I really misunderstood you there. I agree that at the point the child could survive outside the womb, it is a crime, if you are not in a situation where both lifes are at risk. But I doubt that most of the pro-choice see this any other way. I’m sure there are some, though, and those might be louder then all the others.

          Even in the case of rape a abortion this late shouldn’t be allowed. There might be reasons why a rape victim gets this idea that late due to the psychological stress, but that doesn’t justify it anymore. In a perfect society, there would be support for mothers in that situation, but sadly this is not the case most of the time.

  5. Brother John on

    What about the possibility that those who have abortions tend to have fewer children than those who oppose them, thereby reducing their numbers over time?

    • If opinions are inherited by blood you might be right – if this was a trend over the last fifty years and not something that happend recently.

      • Brother John on

        No, not inherited through blood – inherited (passed on) in the same way a religion, a point of view, a preference for particular food, style, etc might be. This is happening recently only in the last 15-20 years since during that time period, those born after 1973 have come of age. Those who were aborted did not survive to pass on a set of values and mores; those who lived had a better shot at that.

        • But children don’t nescessarily take over the opinions of their parents – neither pro nor contra abortion.
          Furthermore, people who are pro abortion aren’t bound to have abortions, nor is it guaranteed that people who say that they are against it, don’t have one some time in their life. Believe it or not, the only women I know that had an abortion are basicly against it – they just had a more or less sound excuse why they had to have one.
          If there was such a tendency, it would be much too small for any statistic to measure.

        • Brother John on

          Necessarily? No, but then again you’re pointing to exceptions. I’m dealing in terms of worldview. Those people who were aborted are not here to promulgate their parents’ worldview, which would -likely- have been their own. Those people who were not aborted outnumber those who were – because they were aborted. We’re talking about a set of mores and values that parents pass on. Not 100%, but enough. If you want to impact the future, it helps if you and like-minded people are actually around for it.

        • I get what you are saying, I’m jsut doubting that this makes any impact at all. Especially since there are no statistics that pro-life people have more people than pro-choice people. If they had more children, I doubt that abortions would play a major role in this. I’d rather say that pro-life supporters probably have more children because they contain religious and conservative groups which have bigger families for several reasons: a traditional family image that allows the support of more children, less purely homosexual relationships, opposition against contraception and also more support from the lower educated and lower income classes which also traditionally have more children.
          Generally speaking, the conservative are always the bigger group by number in every nation worldwide – but only a fraction of them is politically active.
          The influence of abortions would be minimal, especially since abortions are kind of an extreme situation, a choice made under so much stress that general morale might not be projected on one’s own situation – enableing even pro-life people to have an abortion without questioning their view on the subject.

    • NO. The change in opinion over abortion is that many men and women forget how bad it was when abortions were not legal. They don’t of the world before this time. Many men and women have an opinion on abortion, but when forced with a choice, they may have reality supercede ideology. Most women who have abortions are older, and already have two childen, so that puts and end to your theory.

      • First, your post makes little grammatical sense. Second, I don’t care how old you claim to be, you have no grounds to claim how “bad” anything was before abortion was unilaterally declared to be a right. Things are generally worse, because bad decision making has been governmentally encouraged. Third, the idea that most people panic when confronted with an accidental pregnancy and abort it instead of behaving responsibly ought to horrify you – because the idea that people take the barbaric way out more times than not speaks very badly for the future of civilization. Fourth, most women who have abortions are young and black – not the model set forth by the TV character Maude in 1972. You’re just plain wrong.