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The Ruling Over Abortion Pills, and How Massachusetts State Gov. is Responding

The FDA’s approval of mifepristone, a pill used for abortions and miscarriage management, was reversed in a Texas federal court decision by Trump-appointed U.S. District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk. Only an hour later, a federal judge in Washington state issued a ruling prohibiting the FDA from pulling the drug. These conflicting rulings have left the FDA and the Biden administration in limbo, while some Democrats have urged the government to simply ignore Judge Kacsmaryk’s decision. The Department of Justice appealed the decision citing that the challengers were personally harmed by the drug, though it is not yet known whether the federal appellate court will grant the request to put this decision on hold. Northeastern distinguished professor of law Martha F. Davis spoke with News@Northeastern, explaining that “This is an ideologically driven decision that does not reflect the sound judgment that the public has the right to expect from a jurist with a life appointment. The tell is the fact that the judge granted a preliminary injunction to bar use of a drug that has been on the market for more than twenty years, with a proven record of safety.”

In a press conference outside the State House on April 10, Governor Maura Healey announced that the state had worked to stockpile mifepristone in anticipation of the court ruling. Last week, an order was placed for 15,000 doses, an almost year supply. An executive order was also issued to clarify that a state law passed last year that enumerates the right to medication abortion. Healey reassured Massachusetts residents that medication abortion “will remain safe, legal, and accessible in the Commonwealth.”

Read more on the court ruling in the News@Northeastern article, and read more on Governor Healey’s response in the Boston Globe!
Image credits: Boston Globe

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