2012 was a banner year for antiabortion laws

States passed 43 provisions restricting abortion last year, and zero to improve women's access to reproductive care

Published January 2, 2013 7:02PM (EST)

              (AP/Orlin Wagner/Reuters/Larry Downing)
(AP/Orlin Wagner/Reuters/Larry Downing)

According to a policy review released by the Guttmacher Institute, 2012 saw the second-highest number of abortion restrictions ever enacted. The ranking comes as little surprise in a year when politicians like Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock became household names, and one of the House's staunchest antiabortion members got second billing on the Republican presidential ticket.

During the year, 19 states enacted 43 provisions to restrict access to abortion services, whether mandating invasive ultrasounds, blocking health insurance coverage, shuttering women's health clinics or limiting access to the morning-after pill and contraception. The record for most restrictions was set in 2011 with 92.

The worst offenders? Arizona ranked No. 1, enacting seven antiabortion restrictions, and Kansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, South Dakota and Wisconsin followed close behind with at least three restrictions each.


By Katie McDonough

Katie McDonough is Salon's politics writer, focusing on gender, sexuality and reproductive justice. Follow her on Twitter @kmcdonovgh or email her at kmcdonough@salon.com.

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