SCOTUS Prepares Death Blow Of Abortion Movement

In its first significant abortion issue since reversing Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments today, and justices from a variety of ideological backgrounds voiced doubt about a federal ban on the abortion drug.

Former President Donald Trump’s nominee, Justice Neil Gorsuch, projected that the Supreme Court would decide 7–2, with Justices Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas dissenting. According to Gorsuch, Trump’s three appointments would side with Chief Justice John Roberts and the court’s three liberal justices in rejecting the lawsuit filed by an anti-abortion organization against the FDA.

President Joe Biden’s appointment, attorney Ketanji Brown Jackson, questioned the anti-abortion Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine’s lawyer about how a doctor who chooses to practice conscientious objection might refuse to conduct abortions while still granting access to mifepristone for other Americans. On behalf of Jackson, Gorsuch intervened, requesting that the attorney respond to his colleague justice’s query and discuss the “rash” of recent global injunctions.

According to Supreme Court expert Steve Vladeck, Gorsuch’s remarks demonstrated his undisguised contempt for Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk, the federal judge in Texas who decided to take mifepristone off the market over a year ago.

Gynuity Health Projects, a women’s health research group based in New York, has conducted three studies that support the arguments made by abortion opponents to the U.S. Supreme Court that the abortion pill, mifepristone, is unsafe, even though it was approved by the FDA decades ago. Even though the study findings generally favor easier access to the drug, Dr. Beverly Winikoff, president of Gynuity, finds it puzzling that the plaintiffs have extensively used the research to restrict how the pill is administered and disseminated.

Four physicians and several medical societies who oppose abortion on moral and religious grounds are the plaintiffs in the Supreme Court case. They contend that women were improperly put in danger by the FDA’s actions to loosen mifepristone limitations. In their written filings, the plaintiffs contest the FDA’s decision, citing as support three studies conducted by Gynuity researchers in 2019 and 2021 as part of the TelAbortion project. This study assessed the viability and safety of sending abortion pills to women via mail and videoconference.