The abortion pill ends one life and damages another, Rep. Bob Good, R-Va., said Monday during a panel on chemical abortion, referring to the death of the baby and its effects on the mother’s mental health.
“We need to stand up [as] unashamedly, unpologetically pro-life,” Good said of the chemical abortion pill mifepristone, adding: “Government’s number one responsibility is to protect the safety and security of its citizens, including unborn life in the womb.”
“Mifepristone destroys one life and tends to ruin another life as well,” the Virginia Republican said.
Also on the panel was Dr. Christina Francis, CEO of the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists, known as AAPLOG.
“As a physician, the level of misinformation, inaccurate information, that’d come out of physicians, unfortunately, who are pro-abortion has been astounding,” Francis said. “This issue of chemical abortion is one of the worst. This is not the easy fix.”
“You deserve much better,” she said, speaking to women, “and you should demand much better.”
Francis, attesting to the dangers of chemical abortion, said post-abortive women are six to seven times more likely to commit suicide.
Mifepristone, also called RU-486, blocks reception of the pregnancy hormone progesterone, shutting off the flow of oxygen and nutrients to the baby in the womb. Forty-eight hours later, the drug misoprostol is taken to induce labor.
Although the U.S. Food and Drug Administration says the abortion pill is “safe and effective,” chemical abortion is four times more likely to result in complications than surgical abortion, Francis said.
These complications include infections, hemorrhage, heavy bleeding, or retained tissue that requires emergency surgery. After having an abortion, women are also more likely to experience pre-term birth in future pregnancies, Francis said, and as many as 35% of abortions using the FDA-approved pill result in a visit to an emergency room.
“We have a lot of work to do educating and correcting misinformation that’s coming out from the other side,” she said.
“Legislators have a role to play” in the pro-life movement, said Good, who is a member of the House Freedom Caucus with other conservative lawmakers.
Sarah Parshall Perry, senior legal fellow in the Meese Center for Legal and Judicial Studies at The Heritage Foundation, acted as moderator for the panel discussion. (The Daily Signal is the news outlet of The Heritage Foundation.)
Erik Baptist, senior counsel at Alliance Defending Freedom, a legal organization that protects religious freedom, also spoke. Baptist, who has represented women harmed by the abortion pill, said the FDA has failed to properly test the safety of 11 changes since 2016 to its risk evaluation and mitigation strategies for abortion pills.
Each change previously was tested individually, but all 11 changes made since 2016 haven’t been tested for safety in a single study, Baptist said.
Two of the changes: removing the previously required three doctor visits in which the mother would be screened for risks and monitored for complications and extending the approved gestational age from seven to 10 weeks.
“This really constitutes in my opinion medical malpractice, what’s being done now,” Francis said.
“Women are being treated callously. They’re being given these drugs at-who knows how far along they are,” the physician said, adding that half of expectant women are wrong about how long they’ve been pregnant.
The FDA has disregarded women’s health for far too long, Baptist said. The federal agency has “absolved the abortionists and prescribers of these drugs from taking care of these women after receiving these drugs,” he said, “and it falls upon America’s emergency room doctors to clean up that mess and treat and care for these women who have been harmed.”
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