To hear it from abortion activists, late-term abortions are almost never done and are only necessary because of dire medical conditions for mother or baby.

According to former abortionist Dr. Kathi Aultman, neither of those claims is true.

Dr. Aultman performed 1st trimester suction D&C abortions and received special training in 2nd trimester D&E’s. She also served as the medical director for Planned Parenthood of Jacksonville from 1981 to 1983. She has since become pro-life.

About the number of late-term abortions, Aultman confirms it a pretty high figure every year.

“The data is incomplete, because not all states are required to report abortions or their complications, but we know from the CDC Abortion Surveillance Report that 1.3 % of abortions performed in 2015 were done after 20 weeks. That sounds like a small number, but 1.3% of 638,169 abortions represents 8,296 late term abortions,” she said.

Aultman says that the claim about why late-term abortions are done is false.

“We are told that Late Term abortions are only done in the most difficult and tragic circumstances where the mother’s health is threatened, or she is carrying a baby with severe fetal anomalies,” she explained, and then refuted the notion.

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Julie Wilkinson is an RN who worked with Dr. Warren Hern for years in the 1980’s. She assisted him with late term abortions through 26 weeks. I recently spoke with her about her work at the clinic and she told me that the vast majority of the abortions that they performed were done for convenience, not for fetal anomalies or maternal health problems.

Researchers with the Guttmacher Institute recently published an article looking at the characteristics of women who seek abortions after 20 weeks. They reported, “women in our study who obtained first-trimester abortions and women who obtained abortions at or after 20 weeks’ gestation were remarkably similar demographically, the only significant differences between the two groups were in age (women aged 20–24 were more likely than women aged 25–34 to seek later abortion) and in employment status (employed women were less likely than unemployed women to have later abortions).”

Most women seeking later abortions fit one or more of five profiles: They were raising children alone (47%), were depressed or using illicit substances (30%), were in conflict with a male partner or experiencing domestic violence (34%), had trouble deciding and access problems (22%), or were young and nulliparous (24%).

Speaking of Hern, the current late-term abortionist admits that half or more of the late-term abortions he does are on healthy moms and babies.

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