Washington buys 3-year supply of abortion pills before court decides its legality

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee announced Tuesday that his state has purchased a three-year supply of abortion pills before a court ruling that could limit their availability. Inslee, a Democrat, said he ordered the Department of Corrections to buy 30,000 doses of the generic version of mifepristone, a leading abortion medication, in anticipation of a court ruling that could limit its availability. The bulk purchase cost about $1.28 million, or $42.50 per pill. The shipment arrived last month, the Democratic governor said. WASHINGTON STATE LAWMAKERS PASS SHIELD LAW FOR ABORTION PROCEDURES Mifepristone taken with misoprostol is the most common form of abortion in the U.S. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the combination over 20 years ago, although critics say mifepristone was improperly approved. In a Texas District Court case, Alliance Defending Freedom requested the FDA’s approval of the drug be revoked or suspended.  U.S. District Court Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk, who was appointed by former President Donald Trump, heard a debate in March concerning the drug’s safety and the FDA’s approval of mifepristone. The case comes in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade in 2022. The decision removed constitutional protections for abortion and allowed states to legislate its legality.  GOP SENATOR’S BILL WOULD GIVE PRO-LIFE PREGNANCY CENTERS SECURITY UPGRADES AMID ATTACKS Kacsmaryk said he would rule “as soon as possible” but did not indicate how he might decide. Inslee is a critic of the Texas lawsuit and purchased the drug to make it more available to abortion seekers. “This Texas lawsuit is a clear and present danger to patients and providers all across the country,” Inslee said in a statement. “Washington will not sit by idly and risk the devastating consequences of inaction.” In addition, Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson is helping lead a multistate lawsuit intending to further ease restrictions on the medication MOTHERS SHARE HOW CRISIS PREGNANCY CENTERS HELPED THEM WALK AWAY FROM ABORTION: ‘HUGE ENLIGHTENMENT’ The lawsuit, filed with Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum in February, argues the FDA has singled out mifepristone for excessively burdensome regulation. The pro-abortion states have asked the court to find certain FDA restrictions on mifepristone unlawful and to stop their enforcement. Washington state lawmakers are bringing legislation that will authorize the state Department of Corrections to sell or distribute the drug stockpile throughout the state. Abortion has been legal in Washington since a 1970 statewide ballot referendum, and the state has taken several moves to strengthen abortion access. Other abortion bills are expected to pass the Democratic-controlled Washington legislature later this year. The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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