Attorney General Ford Joins Multistate Coalition to Urge Supreme Court to Reverse Lower Court’s Ruling on Medication Abortion

Oct. 13, 2023

Carson City, NV — Today, Attorney General Aaron Ford announced he has joined a multistate coalition of 24 attorneys general in filing an amicus brief to protect the access to medication abortion. The coalition of attorneys general filed the brief in the U.S. Supreme Court in support of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) and Danco Laboratories LLC’s petitions to reverse the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit’s ruling that reinstated certain medically unnecessary, and previously eliminated, restrictions on the medication abortion drug mifepristone. Mifepristone is the only FDA-approved abortion medication, and the coalition argues that the Fifth Circuit’s ruling has dangerous consequences on reproductive health care outcomes, particularly for low-income and underserved communities.

    “I have been clear since this newest attack on bodily autonomy and reproductive health care began: mifepristone is medically safe and should be accessible for those who need it,” said AG Ford. “This ruling must be overturned so decisions on reproductive health care can be made between the only two people who should have an opinion – the patient and the doctor.”

      AG Ford and the coalition are urging the Supreme Court to grant the petitions to bring the case on medication abortion before the court. The coalition asks the Supreme Court to reverse the Fifth Circuit’s poorly-reasoned decision that restricts how mifepristone can be prescribed and dispensed. The amicus brief highlights that the Fifth Circuit’s decision ignores decades of high-quality evidence and clinical research that shows mifepristone is safe and effective.

        The coalition notes that if the Fifth Circuit’s decision is permitted to take effect, it could disrupt access to the most common method of abortion, harming countless individuals in need of abortion care or management of pregnancy loss, with widespread implications for the healthcare system.

          Among other things, the ruling could lead many individuals to undergo procedural abortion; push abortion procedures later in pregnancy; drive up risks, costs and delays; and deprive many individuals of access to reproductive health care altogether. The coalition further argues that the ruling would create widespread confusion among providers, distributers, and pharmacies, and radically destabilize the regulatory process for drug approvals, stifling scientific innovation and imperiling the development and availability of thousands of drugs nationwide.

            Joining AG Ford in submitting today's amicus brief are the attorneys general of Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, and Wisconsin, and the District of Columbia.