For the moment, Wyoming has been unable to successfully enforce the nation’s first bill to ban abortion pills, thanks to Teton County Judge Melissa Owens. While the bill was set to become law on July 1st, Owens claimed the attorneys for Wyoming had failed to show that the ban wouldn’t harm plaintiffs before the lawsuit is resolved. She did admit the plaintiffs “have clearly showed probable success on the merits.”
Other states have, so far, blocked the pills or other forms by simply making abortion illegal, while WY is the first state to specifically ban the pills. Back in April, the US Supreme Court issued a ruling that access to one of the two pills, mifepristone, would continue as litigation with the Food and Drug Administration continued towards overturning it.
At the forefront are four women in total who are leading the fight against the ban in Wyoming, two women and two nonprofit organizations. Back in April, one of the groups in the suit, Wellspring Health Access, opened as the first full-service abortion clinic in the state following a 2022 arson attack. They are also behind the lawsuit filed in March against Wyoming’s near-total abortion ban. Owens had suspended that lawsuit as well and joined the two cases into one.
Marci Bramlet pleaded with Owens on June 22nd about the current status of the suits and their current requirements, making women required to have a procedure for an abortion when pills could have sufficed. “It effectively tells people you must have open-heart surgery when a stent would do,” explained Bramlet.
Complicating things further, back in 2012, the state passed a constitutional amendment with the Affordable Care Act from President Obama in mind. This amendment made it crystal clear that Americans should ultimately have the right to make their own health decisions regardless of what anyone else believes.
As the state’s attorney Jay Jerde argued, new abortion laws in the state allow for exceptions in cases to save lives, as well as for cases of rape and incest that are reported to the police. As such, abortion for other reasons is not considered health care under the amendment. “It’s not restoring a woman’s body from pain, injury, or physical sickness. Medical services are involved, but getting an abortion for reasons other than health care, it can’t be a medical decision.”
Central Wyoming, specifically Wellspring Heath Access, has been using pill abortions for some time now, and pills currently make up half of the abortions inside the nation. Their argument is also based on the fact that the only other previous clinic in the state, 250 miles away in Jackson, also offered pill abortions.
Doctors have been pushing pill abortions as a safer alternative to their murderous ways. As a less invasive option to the decades-old surgical option, many have clamored for easier access to this tremendous sin. Before Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon signed off on the bill, no other state had specifically prohibited abortion pills, making him a visionary for the nation and conservatives from coast to coast.
As it stands, since Roe v. Wade was overturned, 13 states have enacted complete bans on abortion, with 15 other states already limiting access to the pills.
For her part, Owens has now successfully blocked three different abortion actions that Gordon has signed into law. Her GOP-led section of Wyoming includes Sublette and Fremont counties as well as Teton County. Teton County specifically is seen as an ultra-wealthy and more liberal section of the state that many Wyoming residents don’t consider to be a real part of the state.
Owens is setting a dangerous precedent here. The American people have spoken, as have the people of Wyoming. Her decision to allow her politics to infiltrate her sense of impartial judgment and way of life is devastating to the nation. This is not democracy, nor is it what we the American people voted for. It’s time for Wyoming to say enough is enough and get these damn pills away from providers and off shelves.