According to Vice News’ pro-abortion non-profits are using the United States Postal Service to ship tens of thousands of dangerous abortion pills using foreign doctors and the public mail to avoid legal liability.
The suppliers of these estimated 20,000 packets are neither abortion clinics nor abortion telehealth organizations, but instead operate outside of the U.S. legal health care systemVice News: The Underground Abortion Pill Network is booming
The story is based upon interviews with people like Christie Pitney, purportedly a licensed nurse practitioner, a midwife with Forward Midfwery, and co-founder of Abortion Freedom Fund, a fund for telehealth abortions. Pitney also works with Aid Access, an organization that mails abortion pills to states where abortion is legal, through “providers” like Pitney, and to states where it is not, through a foreign based doctor.
As is clear from Ms. Pitney’s statement to Vice News and from numerous posts on social media platforms (see below), abortion activists are completely disregarding state and federal law by shipping the abortion pill to states where chemical abortions have been outlawed and by disregarding any health regulations intended to protect the health and safety of the women ingesting the dangerous chemicals.
What is worse, abortion activists are doing this with the explicit consent of the Biden Justice department.
Early in January, the Biden Justice Department issued a memo giving the green light for the United States Postal Service (USPS) to continue to deliver the chemical abortion cocktail of misoprostol and mifepristone through the mail.
The memo was issued in response to a request for a binding legal opinion by the USPS after the Dobbs decision overturned Roe v. Wade. In the memo, the Justice Department builds a case for allowing the USPS to ignore the Comstock Act – a longstanding federal law that prohibits mailing abortion drugs – based on the flimsy justification that the abortion drugs may not be intended to be used exclusively for abortion.
We conclude that section 1461 does not prohibit the mailing, or the delivery or receipt by mail, of mifepristone or misoprostol where the sender lacks the intent that the recipient of the drugs will use them unlawfully.
First term US Senator from Alabama Tommy Tuberville reacted to the news calling the opinion of the Biden Justice Department an “overreach”.
The memo attempts to ignore the fact that the text of the Comstock Act is absolutely clear and has not been replaced by Congress or invalidated by the courts.
The Comstock Act text is unequivocal:
“[e]very article or thing designed, adapted, or intended for producing abortion,” as well as “[e]very article, instrument, substance, drug, medicine, or thing which is advertised or described in a manner calculated to lead another to use or apply it for producing abortion,” is to be considered “nonmailable matter” that the United States Postal Service (“USPS”) may not lawfully deliver.18 U.S.C. § 1461
The idea that the abortion pill is being shipped, delivered, or received for any other purpose than to commit a chemical abortion is ludicrous, at best. The networks coordinating the shipping of the abortion pills are openly pro-abortion networks. The “providers” prescribing the abortion pills are also abortion providers, not endocrinologists or other specialists who might have some obscure ancillary use for the drugs. Finally, the Biden administration has been clear that, to combat the US Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson, his administration would use every resource available to make abortion as widely available as possible.
The entire argument upon which the Justice Department memo that authorizes the shipping of the abortion pill is truly risible when one considers that RU-486, the abortion pill’s original name, was specifically developed and tested for one purpose, to kill children in the womb early in pregnancy.
In April 1980, as part of a formal research project at the French pharmaceutical company Roussel-Uclaf for the development of glucocorticoid receptor antagonists, endocrinologist Étienne-Émile Baulieu and chemist Georges Teutsch synthesized mifepristone (RU-38486, the 38,486th compound synthesized by Roussel-Uclaf from 1949 to 1980; shortened to RU-486), which was discovered to also be a progesterone receptor antagonist. In October 1981, Étienne-Émile Baulieu, a consultant to Roussel-Uclaf, arranged tests of its use for medical abortion in 11 women in Switzerland by gynecologist Walter Herrmann at the University of Geneva‘s Cantonal Hospital, with successful results announced on 19 April 1982. On 9 October 1987, following worldwide clinical trials in 20,000 women of mifepristone with a prostaglandin analogue (initially sulprostone or gemeprost, later misoprostol) for medical abortion, Roussel-Uclaf sought approval in France for their use for medical abortion, with approval announced on 23 September 1988.History of the development of RU-486 from Wikipedia
Several lawsuits are underway aimed at HHS and the FDA, both originating in Texas.
The first is a case filed by Texas’ Attorney General against HHS’ attempt to mandate pharmacies to carry the deadly chemical abortion drug.
The second, is a lawsuit from the Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine against the FDA for its original approval of the drug as safe and effective and for the subsequent deregulation.
The attorney generals of 21 states filed an amicus brief supporting the lawsuit against the FDA.
While there is hope that the FDA’s illegal approval of the abortion drug will be reversed and the equally egregious coercion of states to allow pharmacies to carry the abortion pill will also be defeated, abortion activists like Ms. Pitney are defiant and pledge to continue to use the mail service to distribute abortion pills.
“The reality is that mifepristone is flowing into this country. There’s a robust pipeline of misoprostol and mifepristone coming in.”Elisa Wells, Founder of Plan C
Any strategy for protecting the right to life of children in the womb form these dangerous abortion chemicals will have to address the willingness of the DOJ to allow the USPS to knowingly ship the abortion drugs in interstate and international commerce.