(LifeSiteNews) — The attorneys general of Oregon, Washington, and 10 other leftist states filed a lawsuit against the FDA on Thursday in a bid to shield drugs used to poison and kill unborn babies from “excessive” federal regulation. The move follows a recent pro-life lawsuit urging the federal agency to retract its approval for the lethal pharmaceuticals.
Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum and Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson co-led the lawsuit, which was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Washington, according to a Friday press release.
Joining Rosenblum and Ferguson are the attorneys general of 10 other states: Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Michigan, New Mexico, Nevada, Rhode Island, and Vermont.
“In this time when reproductive healthcare is under attack, our coalition of 12 states seeks to ensure that access to Mifepristone – the predominant method of safe and effective abortion in the US – is not unduly restricted,” Rosenblum said. “Our coalition stands by our belief that abortion is healthcare, and healthcare is a human right.”
Approved by the FDA in 2000, mifepristone is used as the first part of a two-part abortifacient series. Mifepristone prevents the hormone progesterone from reaching the developing child, while misoprostol induces labor.
The legal action by the attorneys general follows a Texas lawsuit seeking to overturn the FDA’s approval of the mifepristone and misoprostol.
“Pregnancy is not an illness, and chemical abortion drugs don’t provide a therapeutic benefit — they end a baby’s life and they pose serious and life-threatening complications to the mother,” Alliance Defending Freedom attorney Julie Marie Blake said in reference to the Texas suit.
“The FDA never had the authority to approve these dangerous drugs for sale,” she said. “We urge the court to listen to the doctors we represent who are seeking to protect girls and women from the documented dangers of chemical abortion drugs.”
But while pro-life doctors want to see the FDA drop its approval for the drugs, pro-abortion attorneys general want to see federal regulations on those pills loosened.
The Thursday lawsuit by the leftist attorneys general rests on the observation that, while the FDA has approved about 20,000 drugs, only 60 of those drugs (of which chemical abortion drug mifepristone is one) “fall under a unique set of restrictions known as Risk Evaluation & Mitigation Strategies, or REMS.”
“REMS restrictions are supposed to apply to inherently dangerous drugs, like fentanyl, and high-dose sedatives, among others,” the press release observed.
In the lawsuit, the attorneys general pointed out that chemical abortions account for about 60% of abortions in Oregon in 2021, with similar rates in other states. However, they simultaneously argued that mifepristone, referred to in the legal filing as the “gold standard” for chemical abortions, “is safer than Tylenol.”
It’s unclear how a drug can be considered “safe” when it’s used to successfully end the lives of preborn babies.
The legal challenges surrounding chemical abortion drugs come as new battle lines are being drawn in the pro-life movement in the lead-up and wake of Roe v. Wade’s overthrow last summer.
In December 2021, not long before the landmark ruling, the FDA delivered a win for the pro-abortion side by eliminating the requirement that abortion pills only be dispensed in-person to the women taking them. Then in January 2023, the Biden Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) declared that abortion pills may be freely mailed across the country, a violation of the 150-year-old Comstock Act.
The announcement sparked letters from 20 Republican attorneys general warning that the sale of the abortion drugs would violate federal law and expose the companies to potential penalties.
This week, according to an announcement from Kansas Republican Attorney General Kris Kobach, Walgreens agreed not to dispense mifepristone in that state.
The lawsuit against the FDA also comes hard on the heels of a February 21 announcement by radically pro-abortion California Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom, stating that he was forming a coalition of governors to promote abortion access in post-Roe America.
The so-called Reproductive Health Alliance, composed of 20 Democrat governors, would facilitate the state-by-state expansion of abortion by sharing model statutory language and executive orders, LifeSiteNews previously reported.
The governors will strategize on how best to shield abortion doctors from state prosecution, boost federal funding for abortions, defend the manufacturers of lethal abortion drugs, and link arms in potential federal lawsuits in the event that abortion drugs are pulled from the market.