search
Sections List
American Journal News

Opinion: Contraceptive rights are next on the chopping block

After their success with Dobbs, anti-abortion activists have a new target: contraception.

By Lisa Needham - September 26, 2022
Share
A hand holding a bronze cast of an IUD
A bronze cast of an IUD

Conservatives scored a big win when the Supreme Court overruled Roe v. Wade. Now, hardline anti-abortion activists are teeing up an even bigger attack: banning birth control.

Already, activists are calling for the end of birth control. Kristan Hawkins, the president of Students for Life, misleadingly said it “inhibit[s] a natural bodily process,” has significant side effects, and causes cancer.

This mischaracterization of birth control by conservative leaders is nothing new. Indeed, a big part of the 2014 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that allowed businesses to deny contraceptive coverage if they found it morally offensive was based on a deep misunderstanding of the mechanisms behind birth control.

The plaintiffs falsely claimed that intrauterine devices (IUDs) and Plan B actually cause abortions — they actually prevent unwanted pregnancies. And earlier this year, the Missouri legislature entertained a ban on Plan B — one sponsor said it’s something they “don’t believe in.”

However, CDC research from 2013 found that nearly everyone who can get pregnant used birth control at some point in their lives. A head-on attack on their right to use contraception could backfire.

Despite widespread use, some efforts to restrict abortion also significantly restricted access to birth control. The Guttmacher Institute, a reproductive health policy advocacy and research institution, found that a pre-Dobbs Iowa initiative defunding abortions also prevented people from accessing contraception.

In 2017, Iowa decided to decline Medicaid family planning dollars, instead setting up state-run clinics, and blocked funding to any clinic that provided abortion in tandem with other reproductive health services. The policy drove low income people away from places like Planned Parenthood, which could no longer receive public money.

Guttmacher found that people who went to Iowa’s publicly-funded clinics had far less chance of receiving contraceptive care. Before the shift, 32% of people who went to a clinic reported that they didn’t receive contraceptive care. After Iowa excluded clinics like Planned Parenthood from funding, the share of people saying they were not receiving contraceptive care nearly doubled, to 62%. It wasn’t just that people weren’t getting contraceptive advice and care from those clinics. Rather, the overall share of people who simply stopped using contraception at all jumped from 9% to 15%.

Iowa saw this move as a way to starve Planned Parenthood and other similar clinics by stripping Medicaid’s ability to reimburse them for reproductive health services. They instead opted to deprive their own citizens of access to birth control. Now that Iowa’s conservative governor is also asking pushing a court to allow implementation of their so-called “fetal heartbeat” law — which functions as a six-week ban — the future of reproductive health access in the state is grim.


AJ News
Get the latest news here first.

Tai News

Newsletter
Read More
Abortion care and transgender health care are ‘parallel struggles’ in 2024 legislation

Abortion care and transgender health care are ‘parallel struggles’ in 2024 legislation

By Danielle J. Brown, Maryland Matters - February 16, 2024
Jackson bill seeks to lower the price of insulin, ease access for nonprofit manufacturers

Jackson bill seeks to lower the price of insulin, ease access for nonprofit manufacturers

By Evan Popp, Maine Morning Star - February 14, 2024
Oregon lawmakers look for ways to curb prescription costs 

Oregon lawmakers look for ways to curb prescription costs 

By Ben Botkin, Oregon Capital Chronicle - February 12, 2024
Hispanic and teen fertility rates increase after abortion restrictions

Hispanic and teen fertility rates increase after abortion restrictions

By Eleanor Klibanoff, Texas Tribune - January 26, 2024
Whitmer signs specific criminal penalties for assaulting health care workers into law

Whitmer signs specific criminal penalties for assaulting health care workers into law

By Anna Liz Nichols, Michigan Advance - December 06, 2023
For Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, another Trump term is another chance to kill Obamacare

For Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, another Trump term is another chance to kill Obamacare

By Jesse Valentine - December 04, 2023
AJ News
Latest
Republican Eric Hovde makes inconsistent statements about family history

Republican Eric Hovde makes inconsistent statements about family history

By Jesse Valentine - February 26, 2024
Republican David McCormick invests millions in website that platforms Holocaust denial

Republican David McCormick invests millions in website that platforms Holocaust denial

By Jesse Valentine - February 09, 2024
Lawmakers will again take up bills expanding, tightening gun laws

Lawmakers will again take up bills expanding, tightening gun laws

By Annmarie Timmins, New Hampshire Bulletin - January 31, 2024
UAW delivers rousing presidential endorsement for Biden over ‘scab’ Trump

UAW delivers rousing presidential endorsement for Biden over ‘scab’ Trump

By Ashley Murray, States Newsroom - January 24, 2024
Republicans Sam Brown and Jeff Gunter sling mud in Nevada senate primary

Republicans Sam Brown and Jeff Gunter sling mud in Nevada senate primary

By Jesse Valentine - January 17, 2024
A Young Texas Woman Almost Died Due To The Texas Abortion Bans – Now She’s Battling To Save Other Women

A Young Texas Woman Almost Died Due To The Texas Abortion Bans – Now She’s Battling To Save Other Women

By Bonnie Fuller - January 10, 2024
Health care legislation preview: Maryland advocates want to focus on access, patients in 2024 session

Health care legislation preview: Maryland advocates want to focus on access, patients in 2024 session

By Danielle J. Brown, Maryland Matters - January 08, 2024
How GOP senate hopefuls try to excuse the  January 6 insurrection

How GOP senate hopefuls try to excuse the  January 6 insurrection

By Jesse Valentine - January 05, 2024
NH lawmakers will be taking up major voting bills this year. Here are some to watch for.

NH lawmakers will be taking up major voting bills this year. Here are some to watch for.

By Ethan DeWitt, New Hampshire Bulletin - January 04, 2024
Republican US Senate candidates want to make Trump’s tax cuts permanent 

Republican US Senate candidates want to make Trump’s tax cuts permanent 

By Jesse Valentine - December 22, 2023
Rand Paul went all in on the Kentucky governor’s race. It didn’t work.

Rand Paul went all in on the Kentucky governor’s race. It didn’t work.

By - December 15, 2023
Texas governor and attorney general do little to curb state’s chemical plant crisis

Texas governor and attorney general do little to curb state’s chemical plant crisis

By Jesse Valentine - December 08, 2023
Likely GOP Senate candidate Eric Hovde proposed tax hike for poorer workers and retirees

Likely GOP Senate candidate Eric Hovde proposed tax hike for poorer workers and retirees

By Jesse Valentine - December 07, 2023
Whitmer signs specific criminal penalties for assaulting health care workers into law

Whitmer signs specific criminal penalties for assaulting health care workers into law

By Anna Liz Nichols, Michigan Advance - December 06, 2023
105 Republicans voted to expel Santos for things Trump has also done

105 Republicans voted to expel Santos for things Trump has also done

By Jesse Valentine - December 05, 2023
For Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, another Trump term is another chance to kill Obamacare

For Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, another Trump term is another chance to kill Obamacare

By Jesse Valentine - December 04, 2023
Florida Sen. Rick Scott backs Donald Trump in revived push to repeal Obamacare

Florida Sen. Rick Scott backs Donald Trump in revived push to repeal Obamacare

By Jesse Valentine - November 30, 2023
Tate Reeves took donations from power company that hiked customer rates

Tate Reeves took donations from power company that hiked customer rates

By Jesse Valentine - November 06, 2023
Daniel Cameron ran on depoliticizing the Kentucky AG’s office. He made it more political.

Daniel Cameron ran on depoliticizing the Kentucky AG’s office. He made it more political.

By Jesse Valentine - November 03, 2023
Republican operatives sound every alarm on current trajectory of 2023 governor’s race

Republican operatives sound every alarm on current trajectory of 2023 governor’s race

By Adam Ganucheau, Mississippi Today - October 24, 2023
Republican Bernie Moreno opposes existence of minimum wage

Republican Bernie Moreno opposes existence of minimum wage

By Jesse Valentine - February 23, 2024
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott floats building a wall on the Oklahoma border

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott floats building a wall on the Oklahoma border

By Jesse Valentine - February 22, 2024
More than 48,600 18-year-olds are registered to vote in Ohio, a 35% increase from late August

More than 48,600 18-year-olds are registered to vote in Ohio, a 35% increase from late August

By Megan Henry, Ohio Capital Journal - February 22, 2024
Not if, but when: Parents of slain Parkland students urge Utah lawmakers to pass school safety bill

Not if, but when: Parents of slain Parkland students urge Utah lawmakers to pass school safety bill

By Kyle Dunphey, Utah News Dispatch - February 21, 2024
Key takeaways from Monday’s U.S. Senate Ohio Republican primary debate

Key takeaways from Monday’s U.S. Senate Ohio Republican primary debate

By Nick Evans, Ohio Capital Journal - February 20, 2024