Supreme Court Grappling with Manufacturer Over Anti Abortion Pill

( The Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) is currently hearing arguments relating to the abortion pill mifepristone and their questions are leaving many unsure which way they may rule.

Many observers felt the conservative justices seemed to be siding with the government’s position. The case revolves around The Food and Drug Administration’s declaration that the drug is safe for women to take. A group of doctors are objecting to the FDA position and say the drug is dangerous for patients. They claim it is putting doctors in a position to perform abortions in emergency rooms as life-saving procedures.

The justices questioned the lawyers involved for about 90 minutes and some key exhanges are being noted by observers. Justice Amy Coney Barrett, appointed by Donald Trump, asked lawyers for the doctors if there are many within their ranks that have been or could be put in a position to perform an abortion in an emergency room due to this pill. The lawyer responded that there are hundreds but only cited the seven who are part of this case. Barrett seemed to bristle at this claim and responded by saying the only individual she saw referenced in their briefs was one doctor removing the fetus of another doctor’s partner. Justice Elana Kagen seemed to follow Barrett’s line of questioning by saying the doctors need to have “a person,” meaning a specific doctor with a specific instance of conflict.

Observers also noted that the justices may be looking for a middle ground in the case. They asked why doctors who would prefer not to perform abortions simply not perform an ER abortion rather than asking for national restrictions on mifepristone.

Another aspect to the case is something called the “Comstock Act” which has existed since the late 1800’s. The law bans the sending of “lewd” material in the mail and it is written to include anything that could aid in an abortion. Legal analysts wonder if utilizing an old, mostly unused piece of legislation would be applicable. Lawyers for the doctor’s say they were happy with the proceeding and feel they made the case that this pill has too many cases of negative results to be deemed safe.

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