The battle over abortion rights has a dramatic new front: the fight over whether the Biden administration will make pills available online.
Even as they keep a sharp eye on the increasingly conservative Supreme Court, activists, lawmakers and medical groups are pushing Biden’s FDA to lift restrictions on a 20-year-old drug for terminating early pregnancies. Such a decision would dramatically remake the abortion landscape by making the pills available online and by mail even if the Supreme Court overturns or cuts back Roe vs. Wade.
Pressure that had already been building for years over access to telemedicine abortions is reaching a peak, as patients fearful of Covid-19 are seeking to avoid in-person medical procedures whenever possible and demand for the drug has skyrocketed.
As the Biden administration deliberates on the federal rules on where, when and from whom patients can get the pills, with a federal court deadline looming in early April, conservatives are already erecting barriers.