9th Circuit Court Puts Hold on Arizona Law: Disregards District Court

By Joanne Moudy

There was a time when states had rights and could count on the sovereignty of their own state constitutions and laws.  But with the ever-growing overreach of our tyrannical federal government and liberal judges, that time is long past.  In fact today, as fast as states pass laws to distance themselves from the insanity of unlawful federal mandates and regulations, higher court decisions reverse those efforts.

So it doesn’t come as a huge shock that the 9th Circuit justices issued an injunction against Arizona’s law pertaining to abortion drugs, but it does seem odd that the justices don’t feel obligated to follow federal FDA guidelines on pharmaceutical issues.  I guess all those inconvenient rules are meant to be bent, twisted, and broken as often as necessary to further the socialist agenda.

In 2012, HB 2036 was passed by the Arizona State Legislature and signed into law by Governor Jan Brewer.  The law, which took effect in April, 2014, was an important step in tightening regulations on abortion providers to ensure that the medical care they provide to pregnant women is in compliance with federal guidelines and not based upon what’s best for the clinic’s profit margin.

But no sooner had the law taken effect than Planned Parenthood and the Tucson Women’s Center filed suit seeking an injunction against it on the grounds that it puts an “undue burden” on women seeking an abortion.  However, U.S. District Court Judge David Bury refused to grant an injunction and rejected their argument, stating the law was put in place to protect women from “dangerous and potentially deadly ‘off-label’ uses” of abortion drugs.

But even before Judge Bury could rule on the legal issues, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals slammed down their collective heavy-handed gavel on Tuesday and granted a temporary stay.  Apparently they have no respect for the lower court’s legal process or deliberation, because they stepped right in and took the case away from the District Court.

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image credit: LifeNews

The absurdity is that the portion of the law in question simply mandates that the abortifacient drug, RU-486, Mifeprex, be used only per the guidelines of the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA).  Seems pretty straight forward to most physicians, but Planned Parenthood wants permission to do something no other doctor or hospital in the country can do.  They want to operate outside government rules and collect your tax dollars while doing it.

According to the Center for Arizona Policy, when the FDA approved RU-486, it did so under Subpart H, a much more restrictive section of the FDA’s rules specifically set aside for potentially dangerous drugs.  Out of almost 1800 new drug applications approved by the FDA between 1992 and 2011, only 70 were approved under Subpart H.

The drug itself comes with precise prescribing information, labeled uses, and a lengthy warning list, and the licensing under Subpart H simply reinforced the manufacturer’s intentions.  Clearly, the FDA believed the side effects of using the drug “off-label” – hemorrhage, ruptured uterus, sepsis and/or cardiac arrest – constituted serious threats to the patient.

RU-486 blocks the hormone progesterone, thereby causing the fetus to be starved of all nutrients, die, and detach from the uterine wall.  The manufacturer intended for the drug to be used up until 49 days of gestational age, and not beyond.

“On-label” dosing is for the woman to take 600 milligrams of RU-486 orally at the clinic and then return two days later and take 400 micrograms of Misoprostal in the presence of a licensed healthcare provider.  Misoprostal causes the uterus to contract and expel the dead fetus and any remaining contents.  The idea is that the woman be observed while she expels her uterine contents, on the off chance something goes wrong (other than the obvious).

The FDA also recommends that the woman return to the clinic a third time for a follow-up exam to ensure there are no complications (fragments of the baby still inside, etc.) from the chemical abortion.

As a side note, Arizona State Law requires that all women seeking an abortion must be given a counseling session, followed by a 24-hour waiting period before proceeding with an abortion.  That includes ingesting abortifacient drugs.

But Planned Parenthood wants to skip the initial counseling session and the 24-hour waiting period.  They also want to be able to give the RU-486 up to 63 days gestational age, when the fetus is significantly larger and more difficult to expel.

Planned Parenthood’s normal modus operandi is to do a cursory ‘exam’, convince the woman to swallow the RU-486 and then send her home with instructions to take the second drug at home.  As a matter of fact, they frequently advise their clients to not return to the clinic for a recheck after the abortion and bleeding are finished.

And here’s the rub.  Planned Parenthood dispenses RU-486 in one-third the normal dose (200 milligrams), claiming it’s cheaper and safer for the woman.  Naturally it’s cheaper – it’s one-third the dose.  What Planned Parenthood forgets to mention is that the lower dose also means the baby dies more slowly.

What they also fail to mention is that the dose of the second drug, Misoprostal, – the one the woman will take at home, is double.  So when the uterus starts to violently contract and/or the woman is bleeding heavily, she will be alone, unsupervised and without benefit of medical care.

Since medication abortions now account for 41 percent of all first-trimester abortions performed at Planned Parenthood clinics nationwide, they have a vested interest in making certain they can do as they please, regardless of the risk to the mother.

At least fifteen deaths have been attributed to RU-486 since it was licensed and many more women have had complications serious enough to warrant total hysterectomies.  Regardless of Planned Parenthood’s propaganda, RU-486 is not a benign drug without risk.

Aside from the Court’s reaction, it’s also interesting to see how some of the Arizona candidates from two key races responded.

Chuck Wooten, GOP candidate, U.S. Congress, AZ D-2 said, “Abortion is tragic enough without coupling it with reckless, unsafe “medical” practices.  The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling categorically invalidates and marginalizes scientific, FDA precautions that are designed to protect the health of the women involved in ingesting abortifacient drugs.  As Americans have watched for far too long, liberal judges, particularly in the 9th Circuit are legislating from the bench at the peril of women, many of whom are already in a crisis situation.”

According to the Arizona Republic, as of May 27th, his opponent in the primary, Martha McSally, had no comment this issue, and the democratic incumbent, Ron Barber, ardently supports Planned Parenthood and abortion on demand.

Wendy Rogers, GOP Candidate, U.S. Congress, AZ D-9 told the Republic, “I’m 100 percent pro-life, because life is a precious gift from God.  We need to help young women understand they have options beyond abortion.”

Although her GOP primary opponent, Andrew Walter, did not respond to the Arizona Republic, Walter is on record as being Pro-life.  The democratic incumbent Kyrsten Sinema supports abortion on demand, up to full-term.

Considering that the 5th and 6th Circuit Courts of Appeals have already upheld similar laws in states within their jurisdictions, it seems likely that this battle isn’t over.  The tragedy is that one case at a time, the higher federal courts are rendering states impotent to enforce their own laws and stomping on their unique sovereignty.


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