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Kamala Harris: Supreme Court mifepristone ruling doesn’t mean abortion is safe under Trump

VP Kamala Harris speaks passionately
Adam Schultz/The White House

The vice president warned that the ruling is not a cause for celebration in a country where Republicans are attacking bodily autonomy rights.

Cwnewser

On Thursday afternoon, hours after the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously ruled to keep a common abortion medication legal and widely available, Vice President Kamala Harris cautioned the American public against interpreting the ruling as a signal that abortion rights are safeguarded. Her remarks, delivered from the White House ahead of a scheduled meeting with the creators and cast members of the hit television show Queer Eye during a Pride Month event, underscored a somber message about the ongoing threats to reproductive freedom.

“So before we get started, I just want to quickly address the Supreme Court’s ruling today on medication abortion,” Harris began, speaking with a sense of urgency. “This is not a cause for celebration because the reality is certain things are still not going to change.”

“We are looking at the fact that two-thirds of women of reproductive age in America live in a state with a Trump abortion ban,” she continued, adding, “This ruling is not going to change that. This ruling is not going to change the fact that Trump’s allies have a plan that, if all else fails, aims to eliminate medication abortion through executive action.”

The Supreme Court’s 9-0 decision to reject a lawsuit challenging the Food and Drug Administration’s regulation of the abortion pill mifepristone maintains the status quo, allowing the continued mailing of the pill to patients without an in-person doctor’s visit. However, while this ruling is perceived as a setback for the anti-abortion movement, Harris emphasized that significant dangers still loom.

The ruling marks the first major Supreme Court decision on reproductive rights since the conservative majority overturned Roe v.Wade in 2022. Justice Brett Kavanaugh, writing for the court, said that the anti-abortion groups and doctors who filed the lawsuit did not have the legal standing to sue. He noted that they had not been harmed by the availability of the medication, nor have they been forced to provide it. But he said there were other avenues they could pursue. “Citizens and doctors who object to what the law allows others to do may always take their concerns to the Executive and Legislative Branches and seek greater regulatory or legislative restrictions on certain activities,” Kavanaugh wrote.

Harris’s comments reflect a broader anxiety about the precarious state of abortion rights in the United States. Many states have already enacted restrictive abortion laws following the demise of Roe v. Wade. She has consistently voiced the administration’s commitment to protecting abortion rights. President Joe Biden has been a vocal critic of the court’s prior decisions and has pushed for legislative protections.

The FDA approved mifepristone in 2000 as part of a two-drug regimen to end a pregnancy. Over the years, the agency has relaxed restrictions on the drug, including permitting its distribution by mail during the COVID-19 pandemic. The anti-abortion movement has targeted these regulatory changes, seeking to curb access to medication abortion.

“We must remain clear-eyed about the threats to reproductive freedom in America, and we must remain vigilant,” Harris concluded. “And with that, I welcome all of you.”

Cwnewser
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Christopher Wiggins

Christopher Wiggins is a senior national reporter for The Advocate. He has a rich career in storytelling and highlighting underrepresented voices. Growing up in a bilingual household in Germany, his German mother and U.S. Army father exposed him to diverse cultures early on, influencing his appreciation for varied perspectives and communication. His work in Washington, D.C., primarily covers the nexus of public policy, politics, law, and LGBTQ+ issues. Wiggins' reporting focuses on revealing lesser-known stories within the LGBTQ+ community. Key moments in his career include traveling with Vice President Kamala Harris and interviewing her in the West Wing about LGBTQ+ support. In addition to his national and political reporting, Wiggins represents The Advocate in the White House Press Pool and is a member of several professional journalistic organizations, including the White House Correspondents’ Association, Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists, and Society of Professional Journalists. His involvement in these groups highlights his commitment to ethical journalism and excellence in the field. Follow him on X/Twitter @CWNewser (https://twitter.com/CWNewser) and Threads @CWNewserDC (https://www.threads.net/@cwnewserdc).
Christopher Wiggins is a senior national reporter for The Advocate. He has a rich career in storytelling and highlighting underrepresented voices. Growing up in a bilingual household in Germany, his German mother and U.S. Army father exposed him to diverse cultures early on, influencing his appreciation for varied perspectives and communication. His work in Washington, D.C., primarily covers the nexus of public policy, politics, law, and LGBTQ+ issues. Wiggins' reporting focuses on revealing lesser-known stories within the LGBTQ+ community. Key moments in his career include traveling with Vice President Kamala Harris and interviewing her in the West Wing about LGBTQ+ support. In addition to his national and political reporting, Wiggins represents The Advocate in the White House Press Pool and is a member of several professional journalistic organizations, including the White House Correspondents’ Association, Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists, and Society of Professional Journalists. His involvement in these groups highlights his commitment to ethical journalism and excellence in the field. Follow him on X/Twitter @CWNewser (https://twitter.com/CWNewser) and Threads @CWNewserDC (https://www.threads.net/@cwnewserdc).