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January 23, 2012 ( – A new analysis from the National Right to Life Committee’s (NCLC) education department estimates that since the infamous Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision in 1973, over 54.5 million American babies have died through abortion.

Dave Andrusko, the editor of National Right to Life News, said that the number is “so huge that we can’t really come to grips with it.”

“But what it means is that there are over 3,300 abortions every day—137 per hour–or about one dead baby every thirty seconds.”

This week pro-life advocates are mourning the 39th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, with tens of thousands having marched past the national Capitol today in the national March for Life. NRLC’s estimate was released to coincide with the grim anniversary.

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The pro-life organization based its estimate upon data both from the U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the Alan Guttmacher Institute (AGI), a research institute founded by Planned Parenthood.

The NRLC analysis says that abortion rates peaked in 1990, during which year there were 1.6 million abortions. That number has dropped 25% to about 1.2 million abortions annually.

The pro-life organization observes that while the CDC bases its abortion numbers upon figures sent from the country’s 52 central health agencies, AGI obtains its data from direct surveys of abortionist. AGI’s data consistently shows higher abortion numbers than the CDC.

The abortion numbers are cast into further uncertainty due to the fact that the CDC has not included abortion numbers from two states since 1998; the numbers from various other states have also not been included in annual data from time to time.