More than 250 Democrats in Congress urged a federal appeals court Monday to allow dangerous abortion drugs to continue to be sold through the mail without medical supervision.
Millions of unborn babies have been killed with the abortion drug mifepristone, or RU-486, since its approval under the Clinton administration in 2000. Currently, it is used for almost half of all abortions in the U.S., killing approximately 400,000 unborn babies every year, according to the Guttmacher Institute.
In an amicus brief to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, the Democrat lawmakers told the court to reverse its ruling banning mail-order abortions and requiring more safety regulations for the abortion drug, KOLO TV 8 reports.
They also asked that a federal judge’s order to completely revoke the FDA’s approval of the abortion drug be overturned. Both decisions currently are blocked by the U.S. Supreme Court.
“FDA’s determination that mifepristone is safe and effective is based on a thorough and comprehensive review process prescribed and overseen by the legislative branch,” the lawmakers wrote.
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The case before the Fifth Circuit comes from doctors with the Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine who say the FDA put lives at risk by failing to properly study the safety of mifepristone under Democratic presidential administrations.
As emergency room physicians and OB-GYNs, the doctors said they have witnessed “the enormous pressure and stress caused by emergency treatment from chemical abortion [abortion drugs] gone wrong.”
But the Biden administration and Democrat leaders are fighting back, claiming abortion drugs are safe and banning them would put women’s lives at risk.
“Since mifepristone’s initial approval in 2000, FDA has repeatedly and consistently affirmed that the medication is safe and effective for its approved conditions of use,” the Democrat lawmakers told the Fifth Circuit. “FDA’s process and conclusions have been validated by both Congress and the Government Accountability Office—and by the lived experience of over 5 million patients who have used the drug in the United States.”
U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other prominent Democrats signed the brief.
Also notable were signatures by U.S. Sen. Bob Casey Jr., of Pennsylvania, who claimed to be pro-life in his re-election campaign, and U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, of California, who has been sick and inactive since early March.
Two Democrats broke with their party and did not sign the pro-abortion document: U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, of West Virginia, and U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar, of Texas, both of whom have moderately pro-life voting records.
According to States Newsroom, a total of 253 lawmakers signed the document: 50 senators and 203 House members.
In April, U.S. District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk blocked the abortion drug from the market, but the Fifth Circuit limited the temporary injunction and then the U.S. Supreme Court put it on hold. Now, the Fifth Circuit is scheduled to consider arguments at a hearing May 17.
Lawyers for the Department of Justice claim the abortion drug is very safe, even when taken without medical supervision, and women would be harmed if the court restricts or bans it. Its safety is “amply supported by a record developed over decades of safe and effective use” world-wide, the DOJ told the Fifth Circuit in its most recent filing, according to the Washington Examiner.
But the doctors behind the lawsuit contend that they and their patients are being harmed by the FDA’s reckless approval and expansion of the abortion drug.
“Across decades, the agency has stripped away every meaningful and necessary safeguard on chemical abortion, demonstrating callous disregard for women’s well-being, unborn life, and statutory limits,” they said in their argument to the U.S. Supreme Court in April.
They said the FDA failed to study the safety of mifepristone and, under the Biden administration, ignored federal law when it began allowing the drug to be sold through the mail without direct medical oversight.
They said the FDA and the abortion drug manufacturer Danco have “brazenly flouted the law” for decades, disregarding their own safety data and evading judicial review to push abortion drugs on the American public. Under the Obama administration, the FDA even stopped requiring non-fatal complications to be reported, they continued.
“Without a stay, mifepristone will result in more physical complications, emotional trauma and even death for women,” they told the court.
First approved under the Clinton administration, mifepristone is used to abort unborn babies up to about 10 weeks of pregnancy – although some abortionists use it later. It works by blocking the hormone progesterone and basically starving the unborn baby to death. Typically, abortion groups also prescribe a second drug, misoprostol, to induce labor and expel the baby’s body.
Studies indicate abortion risks are more common than what abortion activists often claim, with about one in 17 women requiring hospital treatment.
The FDA has linked mifepristone to 28 women’s deaths between 2000 and 2018. At least two more women have died since then, although the number likely is much higher.
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.