On Thursday, the United States Supreme Court voted 9-0, led by Justice Brett Kavanaugh, to deny a bid led by the Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine to restrict use and access to the abortion pill, mifepristone.

“It was our hope and prayer the US Supreme Court would have found that the plaintiffs, in this case, had standing and that the FDA had acted wrongly in eliminating important safeguards related to the distribution and use of the chemical abortion drug mifepristone,” John Rustin, President of North Carolina Family Policy told Carolina Journal in an email. “Instead, continuation of the FDA’s lax regulations will result in more dangerous ‘do-it-yourself, at-home abortions’ and place the lives of more women at risk.” 

While the decision comes only 10 days after US District Judge Catherine Eagles issued an injunction in a North Carolina case involving mifepristone restrictions in S.B. 20, Care for Women, Children, and Families Act, the US Supreme Court ruling does not impact the lawsuit before her or overturn any rulings she has made. 

Eagles’ three-page order determined that state lawmakers could not overrule FDA decisions concerning mifepristone. Her order also upholds portions of the state law that the FDA does not address.  

In Eagles’ case, the plaintiff, a UNC Health doctor named Dr. Amy Bryant, filed a lawsuit challenging North Carolina’s restriction. Bryant argued that the state regulations conflicted with the FDA Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy for mifepristone. 

The plaintiffs in the US Supreme Court case wanted to make it harder for doctors to prescribe the drug and women to receive it, arguing that it poses a high risk of serious medical complications. 

“‘Under Article III of the Constitution, a plaintiff’s desire to make a drug less available for others does not establish standing to sue,” Kavanaugh wrote in the decision.

“This is an unfortunate day for every American–especially mothers and unborn babies,” said Tony Perkins, President of Family Research Council, in a press release. “In Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine vs. FDA, the Supreme Court has opted not to rule on the merits of a case challenging the Biden FDA eliminating and weakening safeguards for the abortion pill mifepristone. The Court stated that the doctors who are forced to save women from the life-threatening complications caused by the abortion drug mifepristone don’t have standing to bring the case. While we understand the proper role of standing doctrine under our Constitution, we are troubled by this outcome, and we remain determined to continue to protect women and children from this dangerous drug.”

North Carolina’s Governor Roy Cooper praised the decision.

FDA warnings on the drug say that between 2 and 7 women per 100 will need a surgical procedure following use.

“The FDA knew this and still removed the safety regulations that would minimize the physical risks to mothers,” Perkins continued. “This is not the end. The pro-life movement will never stop fighting for moms and their unborn children. We will continue to look toward the day when the FDA is held accountable for its politically motivated reckless endangerment of women and their unborn children.”