Young tourists shout in protest at anti-abortion activists from the plaza in front of the US Supreme Court. Chip Somodevilla / Getty
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In a major, if temporary, victory for abortion rights advocates, the Supreme Court on Friday approved the Biden administration’s emergency request to block a lower court ruling challenging the FDA’s approval of the abortion pill mifepristone when a Texas judge suspended it earlier this month. Decision, High Court’s most consequential abortion ruling since overturned Roe v. Wade This past summer, will maintain access to the drug, which has been widely used for more than two decades because it allows people to get abortions safely, effectively, and in the privacy of their own homes.
On April 7, a Trump-appointed judge in Texas, Matthew Kaczmarik, ruled that the FDA had wrongly approved mifepristone — an unprecedented decision by a federal judge attempting to take a stand-alone drug off the market. Kacsmaryk’s argument relies not only on a shocking lack of science, but also on an old, Victorian-era law that “every obscene, lewd, lascivious, indecent, filthy or vile article, substance, thing , device, or substance”. , Prior to Kacsmaryk’s rule, legislation known as the Comstock Act had not been enacted in half a century. but since turning Roe deerTo reach their end game of destroying abortion access at the federal level, anti-abortion activists have seized on legislation named for 1800s anti-sex crusader Anthony Comstock. The Biden administration asked the Supreme Court to stay the lower court’s ruling while litigation continues: the same day that Kaczmarik handed down his ruling, a federal judge in Washington state upheld access to mifepristone in a separate case. issued the decision. The makers of the pill have even filed suit to keep it on the market.
Friday’s ruling comes as a significant victory for abortion advocates because, as my colleague Madison Pauley noted, abortion opponents could still achieve their goal of ending abortion access with the next Republican president. Are. “All you’ll need is a week,” Joanna Grossman, a law professor at Southern Methodist University, told Pauly. Read more how here.