(FamilyConservationPAC.com) – Following a U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulatory change, 23 Democratic state attorneys general penned a letter to the executive vice presidents of CVS Health and Walgreens urging the retail drugstore chains to proceed with their plans to provide abortion pills.
“We stand in full support of pharmacies like Walgreens and CVS becoming FDA-certified to dispense and mail these essential medications and to make them available as broadly as possible,” the attorneys general wrote. “In a time when access to abortion is under attack — now more than ever in the past 50 years.”
Abortion pills can soon be purchased at local U.S. pharmacies with a prescription, the FDA said Tuesday, a move that could greatly expand access. https://t.co/LM9AUmgfbe
— The New York Times (@nytimes) January 4, 2023
The Democratic Party criticized “anti-abortion states” for raising concerns about the legality of pharmacies’ intentions to sell mifepristone, the first tablet in a two-drug pharmaceutical abortion protocol.
“Based on your public statements, you are dedicated to complying with state and federal law while making these medications as widely accessible as feasible in your pharmacies in response to the FDA’s recent measures. If the letter from the anti-abortion states suggests otherwise, it is plainly false,” according to the letter.
The attorneys general said that studies have “repeatedly established that complication rates are extraordinarily low for both medication and surgical abortion” and that abortion pills are “exceedingly safe.”
“Second, no proof is offering abortion-inducing drugs results in ‘coerced abortion. Indeed, the attorneys general claimed, ignoring evidence that predators and traffickers cover up their crimes by forcing abortions, increasing access to abortion, including access to these medications, empowers individuals seeking an abortion to make the private and confidential choice of which method of abortion is better for them based on factors including accessibility, medical history, age, cost, and a desire to avoid surgery.”
— Family Research Council (@FRCdc) October 23, 2016
The attorneys general also claimed that preventing “underserved groups” such as “people of color, low-income persons, people with disabilities, LGBTQ individuals, and those who live in rural regions” from accessing medication abortion prevents the killing of unborn children.
State officials deciding how, when, and if a pregnant person can make decisions about their own body, including terminating a pregnancy, they claimed, is actual “reproductive coercion.”
Retail pharmacies can now sell mifepristone in-person and via mail order thanks to a regulatory change made by the FDA in early January.
However, patients must still have a valid prescription from a licensed physician.
Following the regulatory change, Walgreens, CVS, and Rite Aid officials stated their companies would provide mifepristone where it was not prohibited by state law.
— New York Health Foundation (@NYHFoundation) January 20, 2023
Mifepristone’s in-person prescription requirement was officially dropped by the FDA at the same time, allowing women to continue getting an online prescription for the abortion drug.
With “limited assurances that a federal law addressing the issue won’t be used to prosecute people criminally over such mailings,” according to Politico, the FDA moved on the same day President Joe Biden’s Department of Justice (DOJ) gave the U.S. Postal Service permission to deliver abortion drugs to states with abortion restrictions and bans.
NEW: Justice Department OKs USPS, UPS, FedEx to carry abortion drugs to states w/strong abortion bans, offers limited assurances against federal prosecution. Story w/@AliceOllstein https://t.co/pVVu9bdQeU
— Josh Gerstein (@joshgerstein) January 4, 2023
Following the regulatory change, pro-life organizations and individuals have organized and carried out protests around the United States.
Republican attorneys general and pro-life state officials have also written to the FDA and pharmacies to advise them not to dispense abortion drugs in their states.
In actuality, the 20 Republican attorneys general’s letter to the retail drugstore chains warning them that following the Biden administration’s pro-abortion instructions could result in a violation of federal and state laws was sent two weeks before the letter from Democratic attorneys general.
“These state laws reflect not only our commitment to protecting the lives and dignity of children, but also of women. Abortion pills are far riskier than surgical abortions, according to established scientific consensus: ‘Medication abortions were 5.96 times as likely to result in a complication as first-trimester aspiration abortions.’ Abortion pills carry the added risk that when these heightened complications invariably occur, women suffer those harms at home, away from medical help.
And finally, mail-order abortion pills also invite the horror of increased coerced abortions. When abortion drugs are mailed or consumed outside a regulated medical facility, the risk of coercion is much higher—indeed, guaranteed—because there is no oversight. Outside the regulated medical context, a person can obtain an abortion pill quite easily and then coerce a woman into taking it.”
“We stress that as State Attorneys General, we must maintain the law and safeguard the health, safety, and welfare of women and unborn children in our states. To prevent harm to our residents, part of that responsibility involves making sure businesses like yours are properly aware of the law,” they wrote.
A case filed in the United States District Court for the North District of Texas challenges the FDA’s approval of the drug mifepristone in 2000.
On behalf of four major medical groups, several physicians, and others, the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) filed the complaint in November 2022, claiming that the government “chose politics over science and approved chemical abortion medications for use in the United States.”
The case cites six distinct agency actions since mifepristone and misoprostol were made legal in 2000. It seeks the court to declare them illegal to remove mifepristone from the market.
In that action, many pro-life organizations, 67 members of Congress, and the attorneys general of 23 states have submitted documents to get the court to overturn the agency’s approval of mifepristone.
Mifepristone is used in more than half of all abortions performed in the United States, according to research by the pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute.
Two of the nation's largest drugstore chains announced that they intend to sell abortion pills following the Food and Drug Administration's new regulation allowing the medications to be offered at retail pharmacies. pic.twitter.com/U1mFy8X6zE
— People (@people) January 7, 2023
Up from 39% in 2017, medication was responsible for 53% of all abortions in 2020.
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