Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon gave the green light Friday for a law that will ban the use of abortion pills. Violation of the rule will be considered a criminal offence, punishable by up to six months in jail and a fine of about 8,400 euros. The Republican politician also approved a bill that restricts most pregnancy interruptions in the State, except in cases of rape, incest or when the mother’s life is at risk.
Despite the fact that there are States in the United States that have almost total bans on abortion -and which already prohibit this type of pill-, Wyoming has been the first to carry out an explicit regulation of these drugs.
The restriction on abortion drugs in Wyoming — a state located in the northwestern region of the country — comes as a Texas judge awaits a preliminary ruling that could order the US Food and Drug Administration to withdraw its approval of mifepristone. , one of the most used pills for the termination of pregnancy. If the ruling were to go ahead, it would affect states across the country, including those where abortion is legal, as well as states with bans and restrictions.
“As I noted, I have a strong record of protecting the lives of the unborn, as well as their mothers (…) I believe that all life is sacred and that all people, including the unborn, should be treated with dignity and compassion,” Gordon said in a letter defending the measure to Wyoming Secretary of State Chuck Gray.
Mifepristone, which was approved by the regulatory body in 2000, has been at the center of the abortion debate in the US in recent weeks. The Walgreens pharmacy chain decided in early March that it will not distribute abortion pills in states with Republican governments or where Republican officials have threatened to sue if the drugs are offered.
Mifeprostone is usually used together with misoprostol to terminate the pregnancy before the end of the third month of gestation. Abortions with this type of medication have accounted for 54% of the interruptions of pregnancies in the US in the last two years, according to data from the Guttmacher Institute.
Legal struggles over abortion rights have intensified in the United States following last year’s Supreme Court decision to overturn the landmark ruling. Roe vs. Wadeof 1973, which legalized the procedure.