Legal battles over the dangerous abortion drug mifepristone are popping up across the country as abortion activists try to work around state abortion bans to keep killing unborn babies.
The New York Times reports the abortion drug manufacturer GenBioPro filed one such lawsuit Wednesday that challenges a ban on abortion drugs in West Virginia. A North Carolina abortionist also sued her state in a similar challenge this week.
In the GenBioPro lawsuit, the company argues that West Virginia cannot ban a drug that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has deemed to be safe. If the abortion company succeeds, its case could set a legal precedent that forces all states to allow abortion pills.
Company lawyer Skye Perryman, an abortion activist and president of Democracy Forward, claimed the West Virginia pro-life law unconstitutionally supersedes the federal agency by “mak[ing] safety and efficacy determinations that conflict with and interfere with F.D.A.’s judgments.”
But mifepristone is not safe. Its primary purpose is to kill unborn babies in abortions in the first trimester. The drug, typically used with a second drug, misoprostol, now is used to abort more than half of all unborn babies in the U.S. every year, or nearly half a million, according to the Guttmacher Institute. More than two dozen women also have died and thousands more have suffered serious complications, according to FDA data.
A leading pro-life group condemned the lawsuits and the attempt to invalidate pro-life laws protecting women and children nationwide.
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“Mail-order abortion drugs have become a leading health risk to mothers and babies, with the chemical abortion pill regimen posing a 53% greater risk of an ER visit due to abortion complications compared to surgical abortion. The Biden-Harris FDA betrayed women by siding with the abortion industry and ignoring science, which points to the great need for oversight of dangerous abortion drugs,” said Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of SBA Pro-Life America. “Fifteen states have strong laws in effect protecting unborn children and their mothers from the horror of abortion. We stand with the people of North Carolina and West Virginia against the abortion lobby’s reckless push to mandate abortion on demand in every state. The FDA must do its job and safeguard Americans from this dire public health threat.”
Dr. Ingrid Skop, M.D., a board-certified OB/GYN and Director of Medical Affairs at Charlotte Lozier Institute, added:
“Just two weeks ago, I performed emergency surgery on a woman suffering from abortion pill complications. This was not an isolated incident. I know from personal experience as well as review of high-quality international studies that abortion pills can lead to hemorrhage, an unusual form of infection, complications in future pregnancies, retained pregnancy tissue and the need for follow-up surgery.
“Too often, abortionists give women the abortion pill and then wash their hands of any follow-up. It’s obstetrician-gynecologists like me who are left to treat the damage, and women who bear the emotional consequences. The abortion pill is a public health threat and it’s past time for the FDA to pay attention.”
In November, pro-life doctors filed a lawsuit accusing the FDA of ignoring the dangers when it approved the abortion drug in 2000 and expanded its use in 2021.
Dr. Christina Francis, CEO of the American Association of Pro-Life OB-GYNs, told the New York Times that the federal agency “cherry-picked studies that don’t actually look at the full picture” under the Clinton and Biden administrations, both of which are pro-abortion.
The FDA is “actively endangering the lives of women and girls in the country, especially as they continue to remove safeguard after safeguard,” Francis said.
But GenBioPro and other pro-abortion groups claim the abortion drug is extremely safe and states should be forced to allow it.
Here’s more from the report:
West Virginia adopted an abortion ban in September. The suit contends that the ban violates the Constitution’s supremacy clause, which says that federal laws — in this case, Congress’s decision to authorize the F.D.A. to regulate drugs like mifepristone — have priority over conflicting state laws. The suit also says such bans violate the Constitution’s commerce clause, which prohibits states from impairing interstate commerce. …
Dr. DeShawn Taylor, GenBioPro’s medical director, said that bans “deprive people of the ability to access safe and effective medications and it also jeopardizes our company.” She added, “If people don’t have access to mifepristone, then of course, it impacts the company’s bottom line.”
Notably, GenBioPro admitted its business is suffering as a result of state abortion bans. In eight states, its sales of mifepristone dropped to zero after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in June, according to the report.
Separately this week, a North Carolina abortionist filed a similar lawsuit against her state, claiming its restrictions on the abortion drug are unconstitutional and the FDA’s determinations should take precedence, ABC News reports.
“North Carolina cannot stand in the shoes of [the] FDA to impose restrictions on medication access that FDA determined are not appropriate and that upset the careful balance FDA was directed by Congress to strike,” the lawsuit states.
But pro-life doctors in their lawsuit contend that the FDA never should have approved the abortion drug in the first place; and it did so by mischaracterizing pregnancy as an “illness” and arguing that the drugs provide a “meaningful therapeutic benefit.”
Skop, the OB-GYN who has treated many abortion pill-related complications, recently accused “the mainstream media and even the White House [of] willfully ignoring the known risks of abortion pills in pursuit of a pro-abortion political agenda.”
“I’ve performed at least a dozen surgeries on women who experienced complications when the abortion pills failed,” Skop said. “I’ve cared for several women who took mifepristone and misoprostol and required blood transfusions or treatment for severe infections, and I’ve counseled women who experienced significant emotional distress after viewing the body of their easily identifiable child in the toilet.”
Along with millions of unborn babies’ deaths, the FDA has linked mifepristone to at least 26 women’s deaths and 4,000 serious complications between 2000 and 2018. However, under President Barack Obama, the FDA stopped requiring that non-fatal complications from mifepristone be reported. So the numbers almost certainly are much higher.
Studies indicate the risks are more common than what abortion activists often claim, with as many as one in 17 women requiring hospital treatment. A recent study by the Charlotte Lozier Institute found that the rate of abortion-related emergency room visits by women taking the abortion drug increased more than 500 percent between 2002 and 2015.
Another new study from the University of Toronto, “Short-Term Adverse Outcomes After Mifepristone–Misoprostol Versus Procedural Induced Abortion,” published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, found that one in ten women who took the abortion drugs had to go to the emergency room, according to Pregnancy Help News.
In England, which began allowing mail-order abortion drugs around the same time as the U.S., new investigations show a huge increase in ambulance calls and reports of coercion and abuse. There also have been reports of late-term babies being born alive at home as a result of mail-order abortion drugs because their mothers did not realize how far along they were.