June 27, 2013. In response to the Obama administration’s decision to abandon efforts to maintain age restrictions on the sale of Plan B One-Step, Representative Mark Meadows (NC-11) and Representative Steve Daines (MT) sent a bipartisan letter signed by 54 fellow Members of Congress to the President asking his administration to reconsider.
On December 7, 2011, Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) Kathleen Sebelius, with the support of President Obama, overruled a decision by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to make emergency contraception available over the counter. Secretary Sebelius ordered that women ages 16 and under must have a doctor’s prescription in order to obtain emergency birth control, specifically Plan B One-Step (levonorgestrel) and its generic.
On April 5, 2013, District Judge Edward Korman reversed the HHS Secretary’s decision, thus allowing unrestricted access to emergency birth control medication over the counter, including to children under the age of 17. After announcing it would appeal this ruling, the Obama administration changed course and allowed the district court’s decision to stand.
“After the Obama administration gave its word to the American people that it would appeal Judge Korman’s destructive ruling to make the morning-after pill available to children ages 16 and under, I am dismayed that it has now decided to abandon the appeals process,” Meadows said. “President Obama’s choice to bend to a district court’s ruling rather than prioritizing the health and safety of young girls is deeply disappointing. Enabling children to purchase and administer emergency conception without parental or medical oversight concerns me greatly as a father. I am pleased that so many of our House colleagues have joined Rep. Daines and me in calling on the president to reconsider his decision to disregard this crucial issue.”
“I am deeply concerned by the Obama administration’s decision to abandon its appeal of Judge Korman’s ruling,” Daines said. “As a father of four—two boys and two girls—I believe that parents and health care professionals must be involved in important decisions involving young girls, especially decisions that pose significant health concerns. I strongly urge President Obama to reconsider his decision and resume his administration’s efforts to maintain these important age restrictions that protect the health and safety of young girls.”