Texas filed a federal lawsuit on Tuesday challenging guidance issued by the Biden administration in July that says federal law does not allow pharmacies to stop people who have such drugs. There is a prescription that can terminate pregnancy.
The lawsuit was filed in a division of the Western District Court of Texas, which almost guarantees the case will go before U.S. District Judge David Counts, a Trump appointee.
Texas argues that the policy violates the Constitution and federal law by using federal health programs to force pharmacies to carry abortion drugs in states where abortion is prohibited.
“Requiring pharmacies to receive Medicare and Medicaid funds — including retail pharmacies operated by the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center — to provide abortions when the mother’s life is not in danger, the pharmacy mandate Dobbs states. violates that states may regulate abortion and directly violates Texas’ sovereign and quasi-sovereign authority,” the lawsuit states.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services — which issued the guidance and whose leader, Secretary Xavier Becerra, is a defendant in the Texas lawsuit — did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Texas has sued or threatened other efforts by the Biden administration to mitigate the consequences of the Supreme Court’s ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which banned abortion nationwide. The precedent of protection of rights has been reversed.
Medication abortion, the two-pill method for terminating a pregnancy, has become a particularly acute flashpoint in the Dobbs post-abortion landscape.
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