FACT CHECK: Abortion Does Occur in the Second & Third Trimester 

Caroline Wharton - 21 Nov 2023

Abortions in the second and third trimesters are a hotly debated topic, and the abortion lobby cannot even agree amongst themselves on what stance they’re taking on it (read: lying about it). Depending on which abortion supporter you find yourself in conversation with, you might be told the myth that abortions never occur later in pregnancy (fact check: they do) or the other popular fallacy that these procedures are “very rare” and thus justifiable. Let’s break down these two pseudo-arguments:  

(For background, click HERE to learn how abortion procedures occur later in pregnancy with medical illustrations.

(You should also check out this recent SFLA blog entitled “The New “Gotcha” Question: What is the Definition of Late or Later-Term Abortion?“)

Myth #1: Later Abortions Don’t Exist  

While most abortions do take place within the first thirteen weeks of pregnancy (the first trimester), it’s not all of them. Depending on your zip code, abortion within the second and third trimester can be both legal and available unfortunately. According to Axios, here’s a look at which states currently allow abortion later in pregnancy:  

  • Alaska  
  • Arizona  
  • California  
  • Colorado  
  • Connecticut 
  • Delaware  
  • District of Columbia  
  • Florida   
  • Hawaii  
  • Illinois  
  • Iowa  
  • Kansas  
  • Maine  
  • Maryland  
  • Massachusetts   
  • Michigan  
  • Minnesota  
  • Montana  
  • Nevada  
  • New Hampshire  
  • New Jersey  
  • New Mexico  
  • New York  
  • Ohio  
  • Oregon  
  • Pennsylvania   
  • Rhode Island 
  • Utah 
  • Vermont  
  • Virginia  
  • Washington  
  • Wyoming  

That is 64% of the United States allowing abortions in the second and/or third trimester. While abortion at any time is egregious, it’s heartbreaking that so many states allow these ghastly procedures to continue when the humanity of the preborn child is even more clear the more developed they become (when just a fetal heartbeat, the universal sound of life, should be enough).   

Not only are these states condoning such cruelty, but abortionists are also lining up to commit the procedures, as well (all for a pretty penny, of course). Here are just three horrific examples:  

The Washington D.C. based abortion vendor, Dupont Clinic, is famous for committing abortions well into the third trimester for decades. This facility offers abortion up until 31 weeks and six days — that’s essentially until eight months of pregnancy. Partners in Abortion Care, a facility in Maryland and an oxymoron, commits abortion up to 34 weeks, just a handful of weeks away from being full-term. Found also in Maryland, as well as Nebraska and New Mexico, CARE facilities (Clinics for Abortion and Reproductive Excellence) commit abortion up to 35 weeks.  

Myth #2: Later-Term Abortions Are Rare & That Makes Them Okay  

It’s true that nine in ten abortions take place within the first trimester — but that does leave around 10% occurring later in pregnancy. However, let’s put the actual number of abortions committed in the second and third trimester aside (because without a National Abortion Reporting Law, the fact is that we’ll never really know the actual number) and make this a philosophical question. 

Pro-abortion headlines excusing abortions later in pregnancy say they are “almost never a thing;” is that really a solid defense? Are only common evils worth opposing?   

SFLA student chalk art

To put this into perspective, there are about 331.9 million people in the United States, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation estimates that there are roughly 25 – 50 serial killers operating at any given time. Since that’s such a small proportion, should we excuse their behavior? The odds of an airplane crashing are about one in 11 million; anyone signing up for that flight? Any sane person would answer no to both of these questions.  

It’s simple. If something is bad, regardless of its frequency, it should always be opposed.  

Pro-Life Generation, don’t be fooled when someone tells you that abortions within the second and third trimester don’t happen. You’ve got the receipts right here — and at the same time, don’t forget that an abortion in the first trimester is just as inhumane as those committed later in pregnancy. It’s not about a gestational limit; it’s about the intrinsic value of life.  

READ NEXT: America’s Laws – Both for Violent Crime and Animal Conservation – Prove That Preborn Life is Worthy of Protection 

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