The Obama administration announced on Monday that it will no longer fight to restrict the sale of the Plan B One-Step abortion pill to children. In a statement gushing with political rhetoric, Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood, called the decision “a huge breakthrough for access to birth control and a historic moment for women’s health and equity.”
In reality, as was clear back in April, the decision means that kids may soon be able to purchase abortion pills as easily as they can purchase a candy bar, depending only on how manufacturers decide to market them. It also means that the Obama administration has conceded that judges, not scientists, will ultimately decide whether a drug is safe enough for sale over the counter. This concession demonstrates how strong, perverted, and dangerous to our health Planned Parenthood’s power over the Obama administration is.
For those who believe that Barack Obama will do anything for Planned Parenthood – at every single turn, on every legal issue, and at every level of government – it is important to put prejudices aside in order to understand what has happened in this particular case. Why was the Obama administration, which is arguably the most pro-abortion administration in history, originally pitting itself against Planned Parenthood in fighting the sale of abortion pills to kids?
According to the Los Angeles Times, the Justice Department argued on the basis of separation of powers: that it is the role of the Executive Branch through the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and not the Judicial Branch to decide whether a drug is safe enough to be sold over the counter. Before Monday, the abortion aspect of this case was secondary to the administration. Separation of powers for the sake of the safety of the American people in drug policy was the focus. On Monday, however, after it became clear that the case could go to the Supreme Court, the Obama administration decided that the will of Planned Parenthood must prevail over public safety – even over the safety of our children.
Oddly, Judge Edward Korman had maintained that Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius unilaterally decided to restrict the sale of Plan B to children and that her decision was “politically motivated.” This is a curious claim indeed.
Can anyone think of any example where Kathleen Sebelius, or any other top brass within the Obama administration, were “politically motivated” to oppose Planned Parenthood? Further, can anyone imagine Kathleen Sebelius having political motivations that contradict those of President Obama? Would he really allow her to act as his agent to advance a policy that is against his wishes?
The fight to make sure that the FDA, not the courts, determines drug safety could very well be the first time this administration has ever opposed Planned Parenthood. In the end, however, Planned Parenthood won the battle, because the administration does not have the will to oppose them as far as the Supreme Court. The health of every human being who purchases over-the-counter medication in America is on the line, thanks to Planned Parenthood’s insistence that scientific research is secondary to their political issue of “access to abortion.”
If our courts decide whether drugs are to be sold without restriction, even to children, the FDA is neutered in its role of protecting us from unsafe drugs. Scientists, not judges, should determine if drugs are safe for children. With a “separation of powers” argument, the Justice Department was seeking to avoid the danger of allowing judges to make these decisions with no basis in science. Good for them.
Unfortunately for all of us, though, fighting Planned Parenthood at the Supreme Court is anathema to the Obama administration, regardless of consequences to public safety.
Today the New York Times alludes to the political impact if this case were to go to the Supreme Court. It would be covered in the mainstream press, which would mean that more Americans would be aware of it and discussing it.
The Justice Department appears to have concluded that it might lose its case with the appeals court and would have to decide whether to appeal to the Supreme Court. That would drastically elevate the debate over the politically delicate issue for Mr. Obama.
The administration has been forced to choose between offending Planned Parenthood by opposing their agenda at the Supreme Court level and offending the American people by refusing to stop the sale of abortion pills to children. Who is surprised that they went with Planned Parenthood on this?
As a mother of four, including two young daughters, I have a great deal of trouble with the idea that our president cares less about the health of girls than he does about the political support of Planned Parenthood. Take a look at the reasoning offered by Sebelius in April, and remember, this is the issue that the Obama administration is willfully giving up on this week, for Planned Parenthood’s sake.
Ms. Sebelius said at the time that she was basing her decision [to fight the sale of Plan B to kids] on science because she said the manufacturer had failed to study whether the drug was safe for girls as young as 11, about 10 percent of whom are physically able to bear children.
It seems that politics all too often trumps science where Planned Parenthood and the Obama administration are involved. Obama is demonstrating willful negligence for political gain as he refuses to fight Judge Korman’s decision.
When the courts are forcing the sale of potentially harmful drugs to children against the judgment of the FDA, we have crossed a fatal boundary in America. If there were ever a time to call out Planned Parenthood and the Obama administration for selfishly putting political power above science, good health, and children, that time is now.
While we are at it, we might also ask that our federal judges be stopped from allowing kids to be used as guinea pigs to be sacrificed on Planned Parenthood’s political altars.