The Supreme Court’s decision on Friday to protect access to a widely used abortion drug by freezing lower-court rulings that placed restrictions on its usage is viewed by some as a victory for the Biden administration and women who suffered a disappointing defeat when the conservative court reversed Roe v. Wade last June.
What Happened: The US Food and Drug Administration’s approval 22 years ago of the drug mifepristone and subsequent actions that made it more accessible will remain in place while appeals play out.
Governor Gretchen Whitmer released a statement Friday night.
“I will continue monitoring this situation as it moves through the legal process and will use every tool in my toolbox to make sure every Michigander has control over their own body,” she said.
Senator Gary Peters (D) also shared his thoughts: “Women across the country are still able to access abortion medication for now – but make no mistake: there is still a serious threat to reproductive rights.”
On the other side of the aisle, state Republican leaders seem to remain focused on banning abortion in Michigan. Pro-life groups are encouraging their supporters to boycott pharmacies that sell abortion or other contraceptive medication, reported local news outlets.
Former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) tweeted Friday that FDA experts’ judgment should not be replaced with a judges’ “rulings that have no basis in science or law. The fight to protect women’s health freedom is not over yet. As this case proceeds, Democrats will never stop fighting to ensure access to this vital medication.”
The next step in the litigation will be a hearing in front of a New Orleans-based federal appeals court on May 17.
“The case could well come back to the justices once the Fifth Circuit rules, but nothing is going to change with respect to mifepristone access until and unless the court both takes the case on the merits and sides with the challengers,” said Steve Vladeck, CNN Supreme Court analyst. “That’s not going to happen for a long time – if ever.”