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U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Access To Abortion Pill



U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Access To Abortion Pill

On Thursday, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected a bid by anti-abortion groups and doctors to restrict access to the abortion pill mifepristone.

By a unanimous vote, the justices overturned a lower court’s ruling that attempted to reverse the measures made by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2016 and 2021 to ease the drug’s prescription and distribution.

The Supreme Court’s decision, written by conservative Justice Brett Kavanaugh, came two years after the court ended the recognition of a constitutional right to abortion.

Kavanaugh wrote that the plaintiffs, who had sued in Texas in 2022, lacked the necessary legal standing to pursue the case.

The plaintiffs, led by the Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine, had argued that the FDA’s actions would force them to provide abortions, violating their consciences.

However, Kavanaugh noted that federal law already protects them from such a requirement.

President Biden, who is seeking a second term in office in the upcoming November election, praised the ruling but stated that the fight for reproductive freedom continues.

“It does not change the fact that the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade two years ago, and women lost a fundamental freedom,” Biden stated.

“It does not change the fact that the right for a woman to get the treatment she needs is imperilled, if not impossible, in many states.”

The plaintiffs had targeted FDA regulatory actions that allowed for medication abortions up to 10 weeks of pregnancy and for mail delivery of the drug without an in-person clinician visit. 

Although the suit initially sought to reverse FDA approval of mifepristone, that aspect was turned down by a lower court.

Erin Hawley, a lawyer with the Alliance Defending Freedom representing the plaintiffs, expressed disappointment with the ruling but indicated that the litigation might continue.

Mifepristone, approved by the FDA in 2000, is used in over 60% of U.S. abortions and has been deemed extremely safe by the FDA, with serious adverse events being exceedingly rare.

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