A federal agency tasked with ensuring public health safety is at the heart of two competing lawsuits that will determine the future of abortion in America. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) put itself in this position by placing ideology over safety and removing the few protections on the abortion pill that it initially established. It continued the trend by further relaxing its safety regulations on the abortion pill and deemed it safe for retail pharmacies to distribute.
We are currently awaiting a ruling from a judge in Texas considering whether the FDA wrongly approved the abortion pill in 2000. Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) filed the suit on behalf of four healthcare organizations that contend the FDA could only have approved the pill by characterizing pregnancy as an “illness” and deeming the drug provided a “meaningful therapeutic benefit.” ADF says to approve the abortion pill, “The FDA needed to disavow science because the FDA never studied the safety of the actual drug regimen, ignored the potential impacts of the hormone-blocking chemical on the developing bodies of adolescent girls, and disregarded the substantial evidence that chemical abortions cause more complications than even surgical abortions.”
Despite the dangers, the FDA expanded the use of the abortion pill, approving it up to 10 weeks instead of the initial seven, reduced and then eliminated the requirement for doctor visits, dropped the doctor-only prescription requirement, and then approved the pill for mail order and retail pharmacy dispensing.
ADF’s lawsuit comes after nearly two decades of challenges ignored by the FDA. The decision will likely be appealed to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals and then to the U.S. Supreme Court.
The Consequences of Elections
Meanwhile, pro-abortion activists want the FDA to end the few restrictions left on the abortion pill. Arizona’s Attorney General Kris Mayes joined a multi-state lawsuit calling for the courts to effectively allow the pill to be handed out like aspirin.
This, although chemical abortions are four times more dangerous than surgical abortions and send one in five women to seek medical treatment for complications suffered after taking the pill. Also, taking the abortion pill can be deadly for women who have an ectopic pregnancy.
Arizona law prohibits sending the abortion pill through the mail and requires in-person distribution.
State’s Pre-Roe Law in Hands of AZ’s Supreme Court
Arizona’s pre-Roe law banning abortion except to save the life of the mother has one more chance in court. ADF filed an appeal Wednesday, asking the state Supreme Court to review a lower court’s ruling that neutered the law with a convoluted opinion in late December.
ADF attorneys made a clear-cut case in the brief filed with the state high court, explaining the intent of lawmakers over the past five decades to preserve Arizona’s pre-Roe law even though it could not be enforced as long as Roe was in effect. With Roe now overturned and the only obstacle to the law removed, it should go back into effect.
Pro-Life Docs Not Welcome
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) excluded a pro-life group from an annual conference it had been a part of for 15 years. ACOG canceled the exhibit booth held by the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians (AAPLOG) for a decade and a half because it did not share ACOG’s beliefs. ACOG’s website states, “ACOG strongly opposes any effort that impedes access to abortion…”
The pro-abortion organization leaves no room for differing opinions within the field. AAPLOG’s mission is to “encourage and equip medical practitioners to provide an evidence-based rationale for defending the lives of both the pregnant mother and her unborn child.”
Arizona Legislative Update
Bills passed by Arizona’s pro-life, pro-family majority face an uphill battle getting around a Governor Hobbs’ veto. But referendums do not require a governor’s signature to go before the voters. Though this provides an alternative path to new state law, it is expensive and takes great effort.
Two such referendum bills are making their way to the 2024 ballot:
SCR 1024 would constitutionally prohibit the state from disadvantaging or treating an individual differently based on race or ethnicity when making admissions, hiring, or promotion or contract decisions.
SCR 1015 would ensure Arizonans from throughout the state have a say in what initiatives make the ballot by requiring a certain percentage of signatures come from each legislative district. This combats the problem of only those living in the largest cities deciding what the whole state votes on when it comes to initiatives. Read CAP’s fact sheet.
- Read here how one Phoenix school board voted to ban Christian student teachers because they don’t embrace LGBTQ dogma.
- Read here how a prominent late-term abortion clinic in Arizona says it is on the brink of closure because of the state’s 15-week abortion limit.
- Read here how parental opposition to a school district’s transgender policy forced the Colorado district to make changes.
- Read here how brave female basketball players are willing to make big sacrifices to ensure a fair playing field.
- Read here about a Christian college’s appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court to strike down a lower court ruling that forces the religious school to open its dorm rooms and shared showers to members of the opposite sex.
Stay connected and consider receiving additional publications by joining the CAP Network.