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Louisiana Makes Abortion Pill a Controlled Substance

On Friday, Gov. Jeff Landry (R-LA) signed a bill that classifies mifepristone and misoprostol as controlled substances, a category typically reserved for things like products made from opium and some mood-altering drugs. This makes it illegal for anyone to possess the drugs without a prescription and would also require doctors to have a special license to prescribe them.

When signing the bill, the governor said: "This bill protects women across Louisiana." The remark refers to an alleged incident in which the father of a fetus slipped abortion pills into the mother's drinks, causing her to have an abortion she didn't plan on having. Of course, the legislature could have passed a law making it a crime to administer any medication to anyone without their knowledge or consent (assuming that is currently legal, which is unlikely).

The goal, of course, is to scare women who might order the pills over the Internet into not doing so and thus to forego an abortion they need.

Politically, this one law won't make any difference. No Democrat is going to win any statewide election in Louisiana this year, no matter what. However, the danger is that the other 22 states where the Republicans hold the trifecta will pass copycat laws, making abortions even more difficult for women in those states to obtain. Also, Louisiana now becomes the test case that Donald Trump will be asked about: "Mr. Trump, you say abortion policy should be left up to the states. So are you OK with Louisiana's having outlawed all medical abortions, and also having criminalized mifepristone?" (V)

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