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Supreme Court Rejects Challenge to Abortion Pill Mifepristone, Allowing Drug to Stay on the Market

June 13, 2024

On Thursday, the Supreme Court dismissed a lawsuit contesting the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) regulation of the abortion pill mifepristone, preserving the option for patients to receive the medication via mail without an in-person doctor's visit. This ruling represents a significant setback for the anti-abortion movement, marking the first major Supreme Court case on reproductive rights since the conservative majority overturned Roe v. Wade in 2022.

In a unanimous decision, Justice Brett Kavanaugh authored the opinion, stating that the doctors and anti-abortion groups lacked the standing to sue. While acknowledging the concerns and objections of citizens and doctors regarding mifepristone usage and abortion access, Kavanaugh emphasized that mere disagreement with others' activities does not warrant legal action without demonstrating tangible harm.

The pharmaceutical industry, which vigorously opposed the challenge to mifepristone regulations, cautioned against potential legal repercussions that could affect medication regulation more broadly.

Kavanaugh's opinion underscored the existing constitutional protections for individual healthcare providers who object to participating in abortions for moral reasons. He emphasized that citizens and doctors with objections to prevailing laws can address their concerns through legislative and regulatory channels rather than through the courts.

Justice Clarence Thomas issued a concurrence to address additional issues with the anti-abortion groups' standing claims.

The Justice Department, defending the FDA's regulations, refrained from immediate comment on the ruling. Danco, a manufacturer of mifepristone, expressed satisfaction with the decision, highlighting the importance of maintaining FDA's expertise-based drug approval process and ensuring continued access to a medication with a history of safe and effective use.

The Alliance Defending Freedom, representing the anti-abortion doctors, expressed disappointment with the ruling, indicating the possibility of continuing the legal battle with different plaintiffs. Ingrid Skop, an anti-abortion OB-GYN involved in the lawsuit, criticised the FDA's decisions, expressing disappointment with the court's ruling.
mage: https://www.cnn.com/2024/06/13/politics/supreme-court-rejects-challenge-abortion-pill-mifepristone