President Joe Biden’s White House is considering executive action to make abortion pills accessible nationwide despite state laws restricting the drug, according to Politico.
The administration may use executive power granted under the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness (PREP) Act to declare a public health emergency to allow abortion providers and pharmacists to distribute chemical abortion pills, even in states where abortion is heavily restricted, according to Politico.
CNN promoted a website that connects women with overseas pharmacies to provide abortion pills Tuesday in the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.
“Before Friday, we had about 3500 visitors in a day,” Elisa Wells, co-founder of Plan C, told CNN host Poppy Harlow. “On Friday, we had 209,000 visitors that day. And it since has remained increased. People are looking for this information. They want to know, ‘How can I have an abortion if I need one in a state that restricts access?’”
Unregulated abortion pills are being sold over the border in Mexico and are expected to be smuggled back into the U.S. as an illegal alternative for American women looking for pregnancy termination services.
These abortion pills are readily available over the counter across the border at Mexican pharmacies, according to NPR. Nuevo Progreso is located less than half a mile from the U.S. border, making it easily accessible for Americans to buy medication in-store and for the medicine to be bought in bulk and smuggled back across the border.
Medication-induced abortions accounted for 54% of all abortions in the U.S. in 2020, according to the Guttmacher Institute.
Abortion pills have grown in popularity since they were first introduced in 2000, the Guttmacher Institute reported. And rules requiring women to receive their first two abortion pills at a clinic or doctor’s office were lifted during the pandemic, allowing women to speak with doctors via “telemedicine” and get the pills by mail, The New York Times reported.
The United States Supreme Court reinstated a requirement Tuesday that women seeking to obtain abortion pills must pick up the pills in person from a hospital or medical office rather than receiving them by mail.
The case is the Supreme Court’s first ruling on abortion since Associate Justice Amy Coney Barrett joined the court, the New York Times reported, and the three liberal justices dissented.