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Rallies against ban on abortion medication planned for Dallas, Amarillo this weekend

Abortion rights protesters rally outside the Supreme Court in Washington on Wednesday.
Susan Walsh
Abortion rights protesters rally outside the Supreme Court in Washington.

Marches are happening Saturday from Seattle to New York City as the battle over access to medication abortions continues playing out in federal courts.

Supporters of reproductive rights will rally at a federal courthouse in Amarillo on Saturday as part of a national day of action sparked by a federal judge’s ruling that halted access to a medication used in abortions.

Earlier this month, federal Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk in Amarillo ruled the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s approval of mifepristone should be halted and invalidated the FDA’s more than two decades old action.

The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals later overruled part of Kacsmaryk’s decision after the U.S. Department of Justice intervened, keeping mifepristone available for use up to seven weeks into pregnancy. The drug the medication’s availability via mail.

The Biden administration has since asked the U.S. Supreme Court to immediately take up the case and late Friday the high court placed a temporary hold on Kacsmaryk’s ruling until Wednesday night, NPR reported. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito ordered both sides to file any responses by Tuesday.

“The Justice Department strongly disagrees with the Fifth Circuit’s decision in Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine v. FDA to deny in part our request for a stay pending appeal,” U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland said in a statement. “We will be seeking emergency relief from the Supreme Court to defend the FDA’s scientific judgment and protect Americans’ access to safe and effective reproductive care.”

The rallies Saturday will be a show of protest against the “manipulation of the U.S. justice system” and the current “anti-woman political agenda,” according to Women’s March, which is coordinating the protests.

“We are outraged by the 5th Circuit's decision to severely restrict access to mifepristone, a safe and FDA-approved medication that has been available for over two decades,” said Rachel O'Leary Carmona, the executive director at Women’s March. “The courts have been stacked with radical politicians cloaked in robes and used forum-shopping to find a fast-track to a Supreme Court completely captured by their agenda. This isn’t just a battle about abortion or about Roe. This is about our rights - this is about our families, and our futures.”

There is also a rally planned in Dallas at downtown’s Belo Garden Park, according to the website.

The Texas events will coincide with a rally Saturday outside the U.S. Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C.