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How Pro-Life is Your State?

Updated on June 21, 2013
Cari Jean profile image

Cari Jean is a freelance writer and author. Her inspiring memoir "Having Faith" is available on Amazon. She resides in North Dakota.

January 22, 2013 marked the 40th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision to legalize abortion in this country. As a result, over 50 million babies have lost their lives to abortion. Even though abortion remains legal, there are states in this country who haven taken action to pass laws and set up strict regulations to protect life from conception to its end.

Since 2006, the pro-life organization, Americans United for Life (AUL) has ranked each state according to their legislative and policy issues concerning abortion, protecting the unborn, end-of-life issues, bioethics and health care.

According to the AUL's Life List Executive Summary, there are five primary laws that are looked at according to each sate. Such laws include:

  • Laws relating to abortion (parental consent, clinic regulations, etc.)
  • Laws protecting unborn victims of violence
  • Laws dealing with biotechnology (cloning, stem-cell research, etc.)
  • Laws concerning end-of-life issues
  • Laws protecting the freedom of conscience for health care providers, institutions and payers


Louisiana gets a number one rating because of all they have done in recent years to protect the woman from negative consequences of abortion and to protect the unborn baby. The state of Louisiana has declared that "the unborn child is a human being from the time of conception." In Louisiana, assisted suicide is a felony. The state also bans any form of destructive embryo research and cloning of any kind.

Once again this year, Washington is the least "life-friendly" state. Washington does not protect women and does not protect the unborn child from being a victim of violence. Only after the baby moves in the womb and is then killed is it considered a homicide. The state condones destructive embryo research and cloning. In 2008, voters made physician-assisted suicide legal.

“I've noticed that everyone who is for abortion is already born.”Ronald Reagan

"If we accept that a mother can kill even her own child, how can we tell other people not to kill one another?" - Mother Teresa

“I certainly supported a woman's right to choose, but to my mind the time to choose was before, not after the fact.” - Ann B. Ross

AUL's 2013 Life List

For the second year in a row, Louisiana has been listed as the most pro-life state in the nation. Oklahoma and Pennsylvania remained at number two and three respectively. The state of Arkansas moved up to number four from number five.

Arizona wasn't even in the top ten last year and they are now at number five. Nebraska slipped to number six from being number four in 2012. Indiana moved up from number ten to being number seven this year. Missouri moved from the number 6 spot to number 8 and Georgia made number 9 with Virginia rounding out the top 10. Neither Georgia nor Virginia made the top ten last year.

The three states that fell from the top ten list this year were: Texas, South Dakota and North Dakota.

The top ten pro-life states in 2012 are:

  1. Louisiana
  2. Oklahoma
  3. Pennsylvania
  4. Arkansas
  5. Arizona
  6. Nebraska
  7. Indiana
  8. Missouri
  9. Georgia
  10. Virginia

At the bottom of the list are:

46. New Jersey

47. Vermont

48. New York

49. California

50. Washington

To see where you state ranks go to AUL's 2013 Life List

AUL took part in the 2011 March for Life. This photo was taken outside of U.S. Supreme Court Building
AUL took part in the 2011 March for Life. This photo was taken outside of U.S. Supreme Court Building | Source

Who Are Americans United for Life?

Americans United for Life (AUL) has been committed to defending human life through vigorous judicial, legislative, and educational efforts at both the federal and state levels since it became the first national pro-life organization in 1971. AUL has been involved in every life-related case before the Supreme Court since Roe v. Wade and has a vision for "a nation in which everyone is welcomed in life and protected in law."

Dr. Charmaine Yoest serves as AUL's President and CEO. Dr. Yoest has a Ph.D. in Politics from the University of Virginia and began her career in the White House during the Reagan Administration. She served as Senior Advisor to the 2008 Huckabee for President Campaign and was the only pro-life leader chosen to testify during the hearings for U.S. Supreme Court Justice, Sonia Sotomayer. She is married to her husband, Jack and they have five children.

Senator Tom Coburn has said of AUL, "Long known to me as the ‘legal arm of the pro-life movement,’ they work tirelessly to help legislatures pass the best pro-life laws possible, and then to defend those laws in court against attacks by Planned Parenthood and the ACLU.”

Recently, in 2010, AUL launched Advocates for Life - groups of pro-life students in law schools such as Harvard, Columbia, Georgetown, George Mason, Notre Dame, Fordham. Boston College, and St. Thomas.

AUL states that, "Roe v. Wade will not be reversed, nor will a human life amendment be passed, until the cultural consciousness is awakened to the reality that abortion is not an easy, quick-fix solution. Rather, abortion is a violent deception that results in two victims: the child whose life is destroyed, and the woman who suffers devastating physical and psychological harm."

Currently, AUL is assisting state legislators in opting-out of providing health insurance plans with abortion coverage through their exchanges. To do this, AUL has developed “The Federal Abortion Mandate Opt-Out Act.” For more information, click here.


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    • watergeek profile image

      watergeek 3 years ago from Pasadena CA

      It's interesting. This discussion revolves around a set of Americans upset at their taxes being used to "kill babies". Does that include the thousands of babies and children killed in other countries by our bombs, guns, and soldiers? The great majority of our taxes go for war. Yet this same set of Americans (though maybe not you) speak out in favor of a "strong military." Isn't that a bit two-faced?

    • profile image

      Evelyn 3 years ago

      This country gets more and more backwards everyday.

    • watergeek profile image

      watergeek 4 years ago from Pasadena CA

      Utah is pro-family. That includes being able to raise a child you bear. The Mormon church is so supportive of families that they have their own welfare-type system. (My family was on it for a short while when I was a child.) If every woman who couldn't afford to raise an unexpected baby was forced to anyway, the church might have a hard time keeping up.

      I fully support the right to choose. Who knows better than a prospective mother how well she would be able to care for a child . . . or not? And giving a child up for adoption is painful, painful, painful, from what I've heard. What if the new parents are just adopting for money, like social services kids often are? I once saw a "mother" whack her 5 year old daughter across the face for being sarcastic. Nope. I support the right to choose and am glad that I live in California.

    • Cari Jean profile image

      Cari Jean 7 years ago from Bismarck, ND

      Wow - that is surprising. I would think they would be much more pro-life than that. Thanks for stopping in!

    • HealthyHanna profile image

      HealthyHanna 7 years ago from Utah

      Where's Utat?? 25th??! What's the deal Utah.

    • Cari Jean profile image

      Cari Jean 7 years ago from Bismarck, ND

      Hello, hello - I agree with you that this argument is going to continue "till the world ends." BUT if a baby is not going to be wanted, why not give her/him up for adoption to one of thousands of parents who would give anything to adopt a baby?

    • Cari Jean profile image

      Cari Jean 7 years ago from Bismarck, ND

      vrajavala - I agree whole-heartedly! Thanks so much for your comment.

    • Cari Jean profile image

      Cari Jean 7 years ago from Bismarck, ND

      enelson02 - I love that ND is in the top 10! So proud of our state and hopefully with our conservative legislators we will be able to do even more! As far as PA goes, I think even though they are #3 on the list, some people still slip under the radar but I am glad that what happened at that particular abortion clinic was found out and put to an end.

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 7 years ago from London, UK

      Cari, a very great article but it is a subject which can be argued till the world ends. I agree with pro-life in one way but also there is the other side. If a child is not wanted it will be treated like - some worse. That is one point where I agree with abortion.

    • vrajavala profile image

      vrajavala 7 years ago from Port St. Lucie

      Americans should not be taxed to pay for abortions here, or in the rest of the world for that matter.

    • profile image

      enelson02 7 years ago

      Thanks for the article - great to see ND in the top ten.

      I am suprised to see Pennsylvania at #3 after reading the news about the atrocity (to put it mildly) that was allowed to go on there for decades and completely ignored by numerous officials in that state who were supposed to be "protecting" women.

    • Cari Jean profile image

      Cari Jean 7 years ago from Bismarck, ND

      Dian'swords4u - Wonderful that you signed the petition! WE do need to contiue to fight this battle - the most innocent of lives are at stake. Thanks for your comment.

    • Dian'swords4u profile image

      Dian'swords4u 7 years ago from North Carolina

      I will sigh the petition. I am a firm believer in pro-life. I wrtote am artticle in another site that I write for. Thank you for your hub and the information. We need to stand up and make it known that this is wrong.

    • Cari Jean profile image

      Cari Jean 7 years ago from Bismarck, ND

      Karen - thanks so much for your comment - glad you signed the petition as well!

    • Cari Jean profile image

      Cari Jean 7 years ago from Bismarck, ND

      Pamela - thanks for stopping by. I saw that Florida was number 26 on the list - smack dab in the middle. Mabye with the state getting a little more conservative things will change for the better!

    • Cari Jean profile image

      Cari Jean 7 years ago from Bismarck, ND

      tony - No, you really don't need to say more! But at least California is not last on the list anymore!

    • Specialk3749 profile image

      Karen Metz 7 years ago from Michigan

      Thanks for a very informative hub. I'm going to go sign the petition now!

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

      Cari, A very informative hub. I think there are a lot of pro life people in northern FL but I don't know about the state overall except we are a more conservative state than many. Thanks for the information.

    • tony0724 profile image

      tony0724 7 years ago from san diego calif

      Cari Jean I live in Southern California , need I say more ?