- Key Obamacare official: Last two months much harder than anyone hoped
- Sen. Mike Lee: We must stop ‘the prez’ from acting like the queen
- George Bush consoles embattled Alabama kicker Cade Foster: You will be stronger
- Megachurch pastor with ties to Obama commits suicide
- WaPo to readers: Send us your ‘gun violence’ stories for Sandy Hook anniversary
- U.S. threatens Ukraine with sanctions over dispatch of riot police
- Canada doing away with door-to-door mail delivery by 2018
- NSA chief defends phone spying: ‘There is no other way’
- Hawaii Health Department head killed in plane crash
- Colorado school drops sexual harassment label on boy who kissed girl’s hand
GOP seeks suspension of RU-486
Question of the Day
Republican lawmakers plan to reintroduce a bill to suspend the sale of RU-486, the abortion pill, and probe the process surrounding its approval now that three U.S. deaths have been linked to the drug.
The measure would ban the drug temporarily while the Government Accountability Office, Congress’ investigative arm, conducts a six-month independent review of the approval process the agency used to declare RU-486 “safe and effective” in 2000.
One of the bill’s co-sponsors, Sen.-elect and Rep. Jim DeMint, South Carolina Republican, said questions remain about the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) approval of RU-486, whose generic name is mifepristone, under a protocol reserved for drugs intended to treat life-threatening diseases.
That decision, he said, which came during the Clinton administration, was “thoroughly political, not scientific.”
If the FDA is found to have violated its own rules, the abortion drug would be banned indefinitely, said Mr. DeMint. If not, the suspension would be lifted.
The bill was introduced in November 2003 after the death of Holly Patterson, 18, of Livermore, Calif. She died of a bacterial infection seven days after she took RU-486 to end an unplanned pregnancy that began when she was a minor.
The drug stops a fetus from growing and expels it in a manner similar to a miscarriage.
Chief sponsors of the bill, officially known as the RU-486 Suspension and Review Act, also include Rep. Roscoe G. Bartlett, Maryland Republican, and Sen. Sam Brownback, Kansas Republican.
“It’s an unequivocal yes that we will reintroduce the bill,” said Lisa Wright, Mr. Bartlett’s press secretary, given that new safety warnings are being put on the drug after the deaths of three American women who took it.
On Tuesday, FDA officials confirmed that Miss Patterson and two other American women died after taking the drug. But they said they do not have evidence that RU-486 was responsible for the deaths.
Dr. Steven Galson, acting director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, said RU-486 will remain on the market with a “strengthened” black-box warning, citing a risk of fatal bacterial infections, septic shock and heavy bleeding, and will be monitored.
Dr. Galson said he does not think the drug was related to the fatal infections that two of the women contracted.
To date, 360,000 American women have used RU-486 and the FDA has received about 600 complaints about “adverse events” associated with the drug, Dr. Galson said.
Monty Patterson, Miss Patterson’s father, said a Canadian woman died Sept. 1, 2001, after taking RU-486 in a clinical trial. He said scientists determined that the same type of bacteria that killed her also was responsible for his daughter’s death. RU-486 has not been approved in Canada, he said.
What’s more, Mr. Patterson said, “There was another girl who died early this year in Sweden” after taking the abortion pill. “She bled to death,” he said.
By Matt Kibbe
The short-term deal will assure long-term overspending
- NAPOLITANO: A conspiracy so vast
- All-out war breaks out in GOP over budget pact
- Biden guarantees victory on immigration reform
- Washington Post to readers: Send us your gun violence stories for Sandy Hook anniversary
- Teen thugs in D.C. run wild -- even while wearing GPS ankle bracelets
- MALCOLM/REIMER: Over-criminalization undermines respect for legal system
- Obama takes 'selfie' at Mandela's funeral service
- MILLER: Dick Heller challenges D.C.s gun registration, files for summary judgment in Heller II
- Study IDs reasons for late-term abortions
- Chinese man fed up with his girlfriend's shopping jumps to his death
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Positive propaganda for a nation in peril.
Politics, economics, and business from a real world perspective.
All of the world’s problems, solved on your back porch
Al Maurer provides a common sense, conservatarian, Constitutional conservative perspective from the battleground state of Colorado
Extraordinary day at Redskins Park
White House pets gone wild!
Let it snow