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Maine maintains access to abortion drug without restrictions

Mifepristone was approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 2000 to induce first-trimester abortions in combination with a second drug, misoprostol.
Charlie Neibergall
/
AP
Mifepristone was approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 2000 to induce first-trimester abortions in combination with a second drug, misoprostol.

Gov. Janet Mills and Maine Attorney General Aaron Frey say the abortion medication drug mifepristone will remain available in Maine without restrictions issued from a federal appeals court.

The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ordered the restrictions in response to a Texas court decision last week that ruled the FDA improperly approved the drug more than two decades ago.

But a federal court in Washington state last week issued a competing decision, saying the FDA must maintain access in the 18 states that filed the lawsuit, including Maine. On Thursday, that judge reaffirmed his decision.

Maine Attorney General Frey says the ruling is likely not the end of the battle, but he hopes it provides some assurances to people who support abortion rights.