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Quote of the Day: Colorado lawmaker says IUDs stop “a small child from implanting”

LegPhotoColorado has a very effective program that provides IUDs to poor and uninsured women at no or low cost. The public health department estimates it has helped cut the teen unintended pregnancy rate by 40 percent and saved the state more than $20 million in Medicaid funding. 

Republican state Senator Kevin Lundberg, however, thinks he knows more than all these public health officials with their “poor science.” He explained that he’s opposing an effort to renew the program because IUDs are abortifacients (they’re not) that can work by “stopping a small child from implanting” (um, what?) He went on: “Protecting life is a very big issue. In my mind, that’s what government is all about, and to protect the life of the most vulnerable and most innocent seems to be the most important.”

Just today the Guttmacher Institute released a new report, crediting publicly funded family planning programs with the decline that most states saw in their unintended pregnancy rates between 2006 and 2010. In fact, Colorado’s IUD program gets its own shout-out in the report: “Three states that conducted significant campaigns to increase use of long-acting methods—Colorado, Iowa and Missouri—all saw double-digit percentage declines in their unintended pregnancy rates.”

If Lundberg, and the many “pro-life” politicians like him, had any real principles at all, a program has both helped low-income women avoid falling further into poverty and prevented countless actual abortions would be something to support. And I cannot believe that anti-choice lawmakers and activists can continue to openly oppose the most effective forms of birth control–the only thing that we know actually prevents abortion–without getting just pilloried for it.

Header image credit: Shutterstock

St. Paul, MN

Maya Dusenbery is executive director in charge of editorial at Feministing. She is the author of the forthcoming book Doing Harm: The Truth About How Bad Medicine and Lazy Science Leave Women Dismissed, Misdiagnosed, and Sick (HarperOne, March 2018). She has been a fellow at Mother Jones magazine and a columnist at Pacific Standard magazine. Her work has appeared in publications like,, Bitch Magazine, as well as the anthology The Feminist Utopia Project. Before become a full-time journalist, she worked at the National Institute for Reproductive Health. A Minnesota native, she received her B.A. from Carleton College in 2008. After living in Brooklyn, Oakland, and Atlanta, she is currently based in the Twin Cities.

Maya Dusenbery is an executive director of Feministing and author of the forthcoming book Doing Harm on sexism in medicine.

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