EPPC Scholars Speak at Rally to Hold FDA Accountable for Women’s Safety

March 26, 2024

On March 26, 2024, EPPC Scholars Rachel N. Morrison and Natalie Dodson spoke at the Women’s Health Matters Rally during Supreme Court oral argument in FDA v. Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine in support of holding the FDA accountable to protect women’s health and safety. Below are transcripts of their remarks:

Rachel Morrison:

Thank you. What a great day to be at the Supreme Court. My name is Rachel Morrison, and I’m a fellow at the Ethics & Public Policy Center where I direct the HHS Accountability Project. As an attorney, a woman, and a mother of a daughter, this case is important to me. 

Being here today takes me back to nearly two years ago, to June 24, 2022, when the Supreme Court had the moral courage to follow the law and overturn Roe v. Wade. The Court’s promise in Dobbs was that the issue of abortion is returned “to the people and their elected representatives.”

Yet since that day, the Biden administration has done everything in its power to frustrate that promise. 

Even though there is no federal constitutional right to abortion and no federal statute contains a mandate to provide abortion drugs, the Biden administration is weaponizing federal law and using federal agencies, like the FDA, to side-step the Court’s promise in Dobbs and promote the administration’s pro-abortion policies without “the people and their elected representatives.” 

The Biden administration is using unelected government bureaucrats, including at the FDA, to impose a mail-order abortion economy in all fifty states paid for by the American taxpayer. 

The very day Dobbs was issued, President Biden “committed to doing everything in his power” to “protect access” to abortion. He specifically identified protecting access to chemical abortion drugs as “one of two key priorities.”

Biden directed the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which oversees the FDA, to “identify all ways to ensure that mifepristone is as widely accessible as possible . . . including when prescribed through telehealth and sent by mail.”

Secretary Becerra did just that. He promised that HHS (which includes the FDA) “will double down and use every lever” they have. The FDA’s decision making on abortion drugs, including modifying the safety standards for mifepristone, was identified by HHS as one of the Department’s “six core priorities” post-Dobbs.

HHS specifically identified the FDA’s 2023 removal of the in-person dispensing requirement from mifepristone’s safety standards as an action taken in response to President Biden’s direction to “protect and expand access to” abortion drugs. Expansion without regard for women’s health and safety.

Despite all this, the FDA urges the Court in this case to defer to unnamed “agency experts” and not “second-guess” the FDA’s “expert judgment” on abortion drugs.

Trust us. Nothing to see here. 

But, as this case demonstrates, the FDA has repeatedly ignored the data and disregarded women’s health and safety in its efforts to make abortion drugs as widely available as possible in line with the Biden administration’s pro-abortion agenda.

That’s not science. That’s politics. 

Today, we are here to urge the Supreme Court to once again have the moral courage to follow the law and hold the FDA accountable for its politicized decision to remove mifepristone’s safety standards at the expense of women’s health and well-being.

Women, mothers, and daughters deserve nothing less.

Natalie Dodson:

Thank you. It’s such a pleasure to be here with you all today. My name is Natalie Dodson, and I am a scholar with the Ethics & Public Policy Center, where I work to promote a comprehensive understanding of women’s health and the dignity of human life. 

This morning, we’re here to support women, including pregnant women, mothers, and, of course, unborn females. Unborn girls and boys are the most vulnerable members of our society.

I was at the rally for the Dobbs case two years ago when we finally had the opportunity to argue at the Supreme Court against the made-up Constitutional right to abortion. I remember the overwhelming joy the day Dobbs was decided, and Roe v. Wade was finally overturned. I am endlessly grateful to have experienced that moment in history.

And now, we are at another crossroads in the fight for life. The fight for women’s health and the right to life from conception to natural death.

Since the day Roe was overturned, the Biden administration has done everything in its power to advocate for the abortion industry. An industry that receives almost $2 billion dollars a year in taxpayer funding. An industry that prioritizes profit over the health and well-being of vulnerable women and children. An industry that disregards the physical and mental toll of abortion on women.

Unelected bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. continually and unlawfully push a radical abortion agenda without the consent of Congress or the people. The very same people this Court returned the question of abortion to in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.

The current administration, through the various agencies, including the FDA, has promoted its radical pro-abortion agenda. This agenda includes promoting out-of-state travel for abortion, abortion drugs through the mail, abortion on federal lands, taxpayer-funded abortion, and overall unfettered access to chemical abortion drugs. 

These chemical abortion drugs harm not only the unborn but also threaten the health and lives of women who take the drugs.

Today, we are here to ask the Supreme Court to hold the FDA accountable for its reckless and unreasoned decision to remove important safeguards from high-risk abortion drugs.

On the first anniversary of Dobbs, President Biden issued a statement accusing state pro-life laws and actions of “put[ting] the health and lives of women in jeopardy.”

He couldn’t be more wrong. The very same pro-life laws and actions the president rails against are saving women’s lives.

Chemical abortions are the most lucrative type of abortion, as they now make up more than half the abortions in the United States. And yet, this administration, through the FDA, removed safety standards for mifepristone even though adverse events due to these drugs are increasingly common. Indeed, one in 25 women who take the abortion drugs will end up in the emergency room. Possible complications from the drugs include hemorrhaging, incomplete abortions, infections, infertility, and life-threatening medical emergencies from taking the drugs with an ectopic pregnancy.

Women need more safeguards and accurate reporting of adverse events, not a head-in-the-sand arbitrary removal of them.

The FDA prides itself as a leader on “issues of women’s health,” but instead of promoting a comprehensive view of women’s health, it would rather promote drugs that kill unborn children and irreversibly damage women’s health.

Thank you for joining me here this morning. We ask this court to hold the FDA accountable for removing these safeguards and putting women at risk.

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