The Supreme Court delayed their decision on a lower court’s ruling that would block access to mifepristone, an abortion pill, nationwide. The Supreme Court issued its second administrative stay, which further pauses the federal court’s ruling and halts the new limitations on access to medication abortion.
This comes after the federal government appealed a decision from Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk of the Northern District of Texas, who “suspended the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) 23 year-old approval of mifepristone,” The Hill reported.
“As this case continues, safe and effective medication abortion with mifepristone in all 50 states remains in peril,” Mini Timmaraju, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, said.
The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals put Judge Kacsmaryk ruling to suspend mifepristone on hold, but left in place changes that include, “increasing the gestational age of when mifepristone can be used to up to 10 weeks of pregnancy, allowing the medication to be mailed to patients, and allowing providers other than physicians to prescribe the drug and approving a generic version,” The Hill reported. The Biden administration filed an emergency application with the Supreme Court asking for the court to allow the drug to continue to be accessible while the government pursues an appeal.
The Supreme Court’s intervention put a halt to those changes after “District Judge Thomas Rice, issued a contradictory ruling ordering the FDA not to change mifepristone access across 17 Democrat-led states” Causes.com reported.
“We are pleased that the court took the only sensible action here, which was to hit pause on a profoundly dangerous decision that has been widely criticized as unprecedented and wholly unprincipled by experts across the ideological spectrum,” the American Civil Liberties Union said.
The court’s emergency “shadow docket” will keep the status quo in place ensuring that the abortion pill, mifepristone, will remain accessible nationwide.
“The anti-choice extremists on the Court need to throw in the towel and accept reality: the science, the facts, and the law are all on the side of legal and accessible medication abortion,” Timmaraju said. “The lower courts’ decisions have been entirely baseless.”