Supreme Court unanimously rejects challenge to FDA approval of abortion drug mifepristone


The U.S. Supreme Court unanimously ruled that pro-life physician organizations have no standing to challenge the U.S. Food & Drug Administration's approval of the abortion drug mifepristone.

In a decision published Thursday morning in the case of FDA v. Alliance for Hippocratic MedicineJudge Brett Kavanaugh delivered the court's opinion, writing that “the plaintiffs want FDA to make mifepristone more difficult for other doctors to prescribe and for pregnant women to obtain.”

“Under Article III of the Constitution, a plaintiff's desire to make a drug less available to others does not establish standing to sue. Nor do plaintiffs' other theories of standing suffice. Accordingly, plaintiffs lack standing to challenge the FDA's actions,” Kavanaugh wrote. , appointed to the bench by former President Donald Trump.

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Justice Clarence Thomas, another conservative justice, wrote a concurring opinion, writing that the ruling “correctly applies our precedents to conclude that the Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine and other plaintiffs lack standing.”

“Our precedents require that a plaintiff prove that the defendant's challenged actions caused his alleged injuries. And, the Court aptly explains why plaintiffs failed to establish that the Food and Drug Administration's changes to the regulation of mifepristone harmed them,” Thomas wrote.

“So, just as abortionists lack a reputation for asserting the rights of their clients, doctors who oppose abortion cannot instead assert the rights of their patients.”

The case centers around the US Food and Drug Administration's removal of personal dispensing requirements for mifepristone in 2021 and its 2016 decision to allow medical professionals other than doctors to dispense and prescribe the drug.

In November 2022, the Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine, the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the Christian Medical and Dental Associations and four individual doctors sued the FDA over its decisions.

Last year, Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk, a Trump pick, sided with the plaintiffs and threw out the FDA's approval of mifepristone in the U.S. The chemical abortion pill essentially destroys the environment in the womb and starves an unborn baby to death.

The 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the lower court ruling striking down the relaxed requirements for the abortion pill but stayed the ruling against the decision to strike down the FDA's 2000 approval of the abortion pill.

On April 21 of last year, the Supreme Court issued an unsigned decision that allowed the chemical abortion drug to remain on the market while the legal process continued.

Oral arguments before the Supreme Court were held in March.

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