Social Choice and Welfare

, Volume 33, Issue 4, pp 575–599 | Cite as

Does income support increase abortions?

  • Hal W. SnarrEmail author
  • Jeffrey A. Edwards
Original Paper


Currently, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) programs in 32 American states allow low-income childless pregnant single women (CPSW) to receive monthly cash assistance, while 28 states and the District of Columbia use lump-sum payments to divert low-income families from TANF. Past research has not investigated the possible consequences on abortions of these two welfare policies. We construct a theoretical model of low-income CPSW to investigate them. The results of the theory yields the following hypotheses: (1) diversion payments to low-income mothers lower abortion incidence; and (2) diversion payments and CPSW eligibility together raise abortion incidence. We use data from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Abortion Surveillance, and a system GMM dynamic panel, two-way fixed-effects empirical model to test our hypotheses. Our empirical results provide statistically significant evidence for the first hypothesis, but not the second.


Welfare Reform Diversion Program Family Assistance State Unemployment Rate Abortion Ratio 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.North Carolina A &T State UniversityGreensboroUSA

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