More Women Dying from Pregnancy in Anti-Abortion Texas Than Liberal California

The rate of women dying due to pregnancy has steadily increased in the United States over the last three decades:

CDC, 2017.01.31
CDC, 2017.01.31

Since the Republican seizure of a majority of state legislatures in 2010, Texas has been a leader in restricting women’s access to abortion and other women’s health services. Since 2010, Texas has achieved the highest maternal mortality rate in the developed world:

via Governing, May 2017
via Governing, May 2017

California “does not have any of the major types of abortion restrictions—such as waiting periods, mandated parental involvement or limitations on publicly funded abortions—often found in other states.” Since 2003, California’s maternal mortality rates have reflected the international downward trend:

from MacDorman et al., "Is the United States Maternal Mortality Rate Increasing? Disentangling Trends from Measurement Issues," Medical Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, September 2016, pp. 447–455.
from MacDorman et al., “Is the United States Maternal Mortality Rate Increasing? Disentangling Trends from Measurement Issues,” Medical Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, September 2016, pp. 447–455.

Pregnant women are dying less frequently in California and in much of the rest of the world. Pregnancy is killing more women in Texas.

Evidently (Kristi) there’s more to protecting life than screaming about abortion. Let’s keep funding Planned Parenthood and get the government from between women and the doctors and health services that can keep them alive.

36 Responses to More Women Dying from Pregnancy in Anti-Abortion Texas Than Liberal California

  1. mike from iowa

    And abortion is STILL safer than childbirth and it isn’t even a close call!

  2. If Democrats would ever seize on the Pro-Life positions like the safe delivery of children through good prenatal care, or the safe delivery of children through well-funded health care (or a pro-life discussion of healthcare issues post birth), the GOP’s “moral high ground” would be taken away.

    Previous discussions have talked about how to peel GOP voters away from the GOP brand: maybe pro-life issues should be one of the first lines of attack. Antiabortion is only ONE of the Pro-Life issues public policy addresses.

  3. “Since 2010, Texas has achieved the highest maternal mortality rate in the developed world:…”
    But Texas is not part of the “developed world,” eh ?

  4. o, it is apparent that you have never heard of Planned Parenthood. This organization promotes prenatal care, safe delivery and of course, birth control. They also champion men’s health as well. So there ya go, seized and delivered.

  5. mike from iowa

    Pro-life is a cruel joke. Just a cover for controlling women’s reproductive choices. Why force more unwanted kids to be born? Do you pro-life people get a buzz from watching them starve or not get educated or dying from preventable diseases because your compassion for fellow humans only extends to the wealthy?

    If you demand forced childbirth, I demand you adopt each and every fetus brought to term plus you make birth control widely available and free and put comprehensive sex education in schools and make attendance mandatory.

    But, then, I will never have to make THAT choice to abort. Now will I?

  6. Not to mention Texas ranks last in number of people insured, close to 17% don’t have health insurance. I’m sure this is a factor also, but republicans will say those people are illegal immigrants so they don’t matter.
    The state of Texas has over 600,000 CHILDREN UNINSURED, almost as many people as in the state of SD, (but them Hispanics don’t matter anyways).
    These red state statistics are just sad. :(

  7. Jerry, it is clear that a purely intellectual (if not smug) approach to the pro-life issue has failed the Democrat party and delivered voters in droves to the GOP. But by all means, continue. Everyone is aware of planned parenthood, what Democrats continue to flounder on is turning support for PP into a pro-life issue and denial of those services through GOP funding cuts as a wedge into the hypocrisy of GOP pro-lifers.

  8. Mike, I disagree: I do not think pro-life is a joke. I think that trivializes real, moral objections some have. You are cutting off your nose to spite your face by lumping in the moral stance of voters with the opportunistic way legislators and candidates use those voters to get elected.

    Again, I also think as Democrats, is is foolish to allow “pro-life” to be limited to or defined as only “anti-abortion.”

    Here is a piece of pro-life legislation I would like to see: the full cost of delivery of ALL children covered by the government. Make sure EVERY expecting mother knows that she has available to her the best care the USA can provide, and that she need not worry about the cost of that care. How would that promise affect abortion decisions? That to me is pro-life, but is the GOP willing to fork out some funding to be pro-life?

  9. Jenny, I agree with everything you write here. Wh not now wrap all that in the language of ‘pro-life” to expand and take the moral high ground for Democrats/progressives?

  10. mike from iowa

    O- birth control, abortions and sex education are all cheaper and less morally repugnant than having our government demand women become incubators for kids they don’t want-for what ever reason.

    I also get extremely tired of hearing how we should become the other side. I will not surrender an inch to those reprehensible people. As a whole, they do not practice what they preach. The party of family values, fiscal responsibility and personal responsibility they ain’t.

  11. o, it has not failed, even in South Dakota. The law of the land is the law of the land. Jackboot Jackley may stomp his feet and hold his breath to pass the crap that passes as legislation here in South Dakota, but it still has not changed the law of the land. Planned Parenthood just got funded man, that is the tale of the tape. I am pro life, whatever the hell that means. To me it means that I myself would rather be alive than dead. I am also pro choice on everything from women’s choice to the choice of making any kind of purchase I want for a hand gun, rifle or shotgun as I am mentally stable enough to do whatever the hell I want to do within reason. I am also mentally able to be pro choice when it comes to what I choose as medical treatments to include medical marijuana. Those should be what the platform is and just so happens to be pretty close to where it is presently. I cannot help it that the SDDP stumbles off on listening tours when they already have a platform that they should be bellowing from. I see more of the problem being a brand that stands for something and shouts it out rather than one that wants avoid confrontation.

  12. Mike, how is that “abortion is cheaper than having a baby” argument working out for you to get converts to the Democrat cause?

  13. wow o, you are a not a very good troll, but you seem to think you are terrific. Sad

  14. Jerry, no trolling, just making the point that arguments like these ought to be framed in pro-life rhetoric to show that Democrats are on the right side of pro-life issues, pro-life means far more than only anti-abortion, that the the proclaimed pro-life GOP is not pro-life in the wide sense. You can toss around statistics and data, but until Democrats choose a strategy to use that information to bring voters to the Democratic side of issues, it is just dust in the wind – worse yet it is the perpetuation of the red trend of governance that has seen the ruin of so much good this country stood for.

    PS, I am pretty terrific.

  15. mike from iowa

    0 I am not actively soliciting converts. Most people can make up their own minds. But it is important they get all the facts and not religious BS.

    No I did not accuse you of religious BS. We need to give straight information and stats, not play to people’s emotions and force women to undergo unnecessary trials and hardships on the off chance you (anti-abortion foes, not you personally) can force them to change their minds.

    If a woman does not want an abortion, she shouldn’t have one. If she decides it is in her best interests to terminate a pregnancy, that is her right and her decision.

  16. mike from iowa

    Dems should not have to demonstrate how wingnuts go out of their way to claim to be anti-regulatory, small government nice people when they constantly attempt to use government rules and the courts to control women’s bodies. That is painfully evident for anyone to see.

  17. I’m inclined to view any use of the word “troll” as an unwelcome detour from the argument. I can vouch for O—he is no “troll”… the definition of which still evades me but which seems to be someone persisting in saying things others don’t like to hear.

    Everything O has stated is perfectly rational and not bad campaign advice. He’s saying grab pro-life, propose real policies that protect life in ways far beyond the marginal business of trying to increase the number of women who bring pregnancies to term by a mere 800 each year.

    I was just thinking about this on the bike ride home: suppose we spotted South Dakota’s anti-abortion crusaders their full agenda: ban all abortions. Assume such an absolute ban would force the 800 or so women who have abortions each year in South Dakota to all carry their pregnancies to term—no crossing the border to abort elsewhere, no self-induced abortions, just 800 more babies. Then what? Would the triumphant abortion banners turn to other pro-life action like O prescribes? Would they support fully subsidized pre=natal check-ups, delivery, and post-natal services? Would they agree to fund an abortionless Planned Parenthood to provide health services to the poor through Medicaid? Would they support education, environmental regulation, and other measures that would make life better for those 800 additional babies and all their cohorts? Or would they just fold up, thinking there was nothing else to which to apply their absolute commitment to LIFE?

  18. mike from iowa

    Thanks to Dems finding a backbone, wingnuts will not be able to defund PP. No money for Drumpf’s wall. EPA and other agencies get to keep more funding in spending bill Drumpf sez he will sign.

  19. o, sorry about the troll thing. I saw the twisting of words and my imagination went into overtime. I also thought about where it is you are going regarding pro life issues and see that for the most part, I think you are correct in the way issues are dealt with when opponents of abortion set the frame work while twisting words to veer of the course of discussion.

    Legislation was passed that pretty much allows all pregnant women to receive prenatal attention including non US citizens. So the argument that Democrats would bring about change to already existing laws, rings kind of hollow, unless that law no longer stands. What the argument should be about is pro life under healthcare period with the expansion of Medicaid and more generous amounts for childcare and much increased SNAP for nutritional needs for children and their mothers. Mothers should also be granted educational tools so they can help support their families. Instead of punishing mothers, we should be pampering them for the sacrifices they make.

    BTW, pro life should also mean equal pay for the workplace without sexual harassment. See the SDDP platform regarding the stand of Democrats on all of these issues. Then ask the same SDDP why no one knows about the platform or that it even exists.

  20. Jerry, no worries. I came to poke the bear a little, and want a free exchange of ideas. If I wanted an echo chamber I would look elsewhere (in party and blog).

    I just am so tired of being in the party that is branded the “opposition to Pro-Life.” Everything you and Mike and others have said about the hypocrisy of the GOP and the REAL things Democrats do to extend the health and well-being of all Americans frustrates me when it does not get the traction and credit it deserves by pulling more voters to Democrat candidates.

    As for Cory’s abortion policy thought experiment, isn’t a version of that happening with guns? Now that Obama is not coming for your guns, and Hillary is not coming for your guns, how is the NRA – the sales division of the arms merchants of the USA – going to use fear to entice people into buying more guns? Trump gave it a run at the last NRA rally where he brought up the “Pocahontas” boogieman to keep the fear alive, but that was fear driven to support HIM, not so much gun sales. Now that the Second Amendment is safe and not under siege from a Democrat president, can Second Amendment GOP faithful be courted with other non-gun issues?

  21. mike from iowa

    O- you are dealing with alternate reality-fake news from wingnuts. Some day these people? will wake up and discover how bad America can and will be under wingnut rule.

    Speaking personally and only for me-I will not be driven to join this cluster and will not attempt to openly engage people this far removed from truth.

    I am not interested in what they believe or why they believe it. They are stark, raving NUTZ!

  22. o, as far as guns go, there are not as many gun sales to new gun owners. As has been in the recent past, most guns are purchased by those gun owners that already own an arsenal, even after trump’s election.

    With more woe on the ag scene, I predict that there will be even more guns sold to others than are kept on the place. Simple stuff, why have several 500 to 600 dollar guns laying around when you need the money. As far as a survivalist goes, how many of those guns can you carry with the ammo needed? Old fat white guys love’s them some guns long as you can afford them. The young ones that are gun crazy mostly do not hunt as that is a rich man’s game unless your family has some land. Even those family members are getting kind of reluctant to have them though as each buck can bring in about 5 grand and upwards in cash money. So are you gonna deprive Uncle Zeke out of food and property tax money or are you gonna just target practice on some empty bottles while imagining that those bottles are some pesky darkies?

  23. Porter Lansing

    The above expert analysis by FreePress contributors shows clearly that the Republican political party’s claim to be “Pro-Choice” is only a transparent distraction. Look at who their leaders are. Deutsch, Hickey, Powers, Jones What they ARE (really) is “Anti-Choice”. They’ve turned from attacking women’s choices to attacking terminally ill people’s choices to attacking ethics commission and election reform voters choices. These Republican leaders care squat about young babies or old and dying people or your majority voter’s desires. It’s a subliminal superiority complex and it’s about being able to tell people like you what to do … and that’s bullying. We all know what happens or should happen to bullies, don’t we? Don’t let them use fetuses or sick people or phony unconstitutional claims to distract you. Dig deep into what’s really motivating these bullies and you’ll find fake compassion for anyone and everything except themselves and their ballooned egos … along with, of course a perverted desire to be the master over females.

  24. O, you make a good comparison of my abortion thought experiment to what we see on gun politics right now. Maybe smart Democrats can develop the analogy on the stump, talking about how gun politics and abortion politics are really quite similar: people get all emotional and absolute about them, but those issues don’t bake much bread. Even now, with the gun criers totally getting their way, we still have potholes and poor schools and a national debt and all sorts of practical problems that aren’t solved one bit by guns.

    The abortion criers’ efforts are even worse: their emotional absolutism leads us to irrational policies like defunding Planned Parenthood that end up denying women important health services and leading to more disease and death.

  25. Regarding our neighbor to the south, Nebraska and in particular, Lincoln, Nebraska “Tonight, Lincoln showed that they are fed up with how Republicans are governing and are rejecting the one-party rule in our state. Voters elected Leirion Gaylor Baird and Bennie Shobe to the City Council giving Democrats the majority. Voters elected Democrat Zachary Mora James to the Airport Authority, a critical infrastructure position for the growing city.” Now, if we only had a SDDP that could walk and chew gum at the same time, we here might have a shot at bringing people out to vote. In the real world, it is called GOTV. In South Dakota, it is called watch TV to see the same old reruns of republican governing.

  26. Wapo article on Nancy Pelosi contains this “The Democratic Party should not impose support for abortion rights as a litmus test on its candidates, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Tuesday, because it needs a broad and inclusive agenda to win back the socially conservative voters who helped elect President Trump.

    “This is the Democratic Party. This is not a rubber-stamp party,” Pelosi said in an interview with Washington Post reporters.

    “I grew up Nancy D’Alesandro, in Baltimore, Maryland; in Little Italy; in a very devout Catholic family; fiercely patriotic; proud of our town and heritage, and staunchly Democratic,” she added, referring to the fact that she is the daughter and sister of former mayors of that city. “Most of those people — my family, extended family — are not pro-choice. You think I’m kicking them out of the Democratic Party?”

    So there ya go, speaking your mind is speaking as a Democrat.

  27. Porter Lansing

    Hard to argue with that logic, Jerry. The party of tolerances must be tolerant. The zealots in SoDak aren’t Pro-Life as much as they’re Anti-Choice which has little to do with abortion and a lot to do with bullying.

  28. mike from iowa

    Hard to remain tolerant at times. OTOH, compared to wingnuts, libs stay well within industry standard tolerances.

  29. mike from iowa

    Use this link instead for above comment.

  30. Porter Lansing

    Hard to say that Ann Coulter and David Horowitz should be allowed to preach hate but hate speech IS free speech. *doesn’t mean they get a free pass without valid criticism, though

  31. bearcreekbat

    Perhaps “tolerance” of speech should be considered in context. When “tolerance” of speech results in harm to innocent people, it could also be called “complicity” in the infliction of that same harm.

    The government is limited by the 1st Amendment, but even it has carved out exceptions to avoid complicity in allowing harmful conduct by speech, such as criminalizing “threats.”

    The college kids are not limited by the 1st Amendment, however, so a different standard of “tolerance” seems appropriate, especially for kids who are progressives and humanists.

    The 1st Amendment and “freedom of speech” survives fully intact when college kids threaten to riot in public settings when they object to someone coming to use speech as a means of attempting to demonize, harm and encourage fear and hatred of innocent people.

    Anti-immigrant speech reminds me of the “free” speech in the 1850’s that resulted in Congress enacting the infamous “Fugitive Slave Act.” Under that Act slaves who violated the law by running to “free” states became targets for government arrests and deportation to the original slave state. Congress enacted the law to require local free-state law enforcement to assume responsibility for finding, arresting and deporting runaway slaves living in the free state. Somehow, this “Fugitive Slave Act” seems a lot like the immigration enforcement policies of the Trump administration today – likely in response to the “free” speech of hate radio and the sickening anti-immigration speech.

  32. I don’t think free speech is a right to twist speech from truth

  33. Porter Lansing

    BCB and Leslie … Would an increased tolerance of pro-life policies increase Democrats popularity in South Dakota to a point it would be beneficial?

  34. Porter, increased tolerance of pro-life policies won’t increase Democrats’ popularity. The absolutists and fakers will find some other excuse to brand us Commies and not vote for us. We’ll have to keep trading away the principles that distinguish us (commitment to women’s equality and bodily autonomy; placing confidence in American values and civic institutions over raw, armed fear; belief in replacing regressive sales tax with progressive income tax) until we’re just another wing of the Republican party.

    Increased tolerance of anti-abortion incrementalism-toward-absolutism will increase Democrats’ moral and Constitutional wrongness. We need to fight for what’s right, which is knocking the electorate off its excuses and getting them to deal with and vote on practical policy instead of Al Novstrup’s pretend concern for the dignity of all life.

  35. Porter Lansing

    I agree, currently. It’s a national Dem discussion and I thought SD is a good place to experiment.

  36. South Dakota’s already there. What Democrats have campaigned vigorously against South Dakota’s abortion restrictions? What Democrats in Pierre filed any legislation to repeal any of our unconstitutional, oppressive restrictions?

    The study cited above only broke out data for Texas and California. I’d like to see South Dakota’s data.