Hillary Clinton Is Still Right On This One

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Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y. and Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., are still maintaining their "hold" on the confirmation of Dr. Andrew von Eschenbach to head up the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Why? Because they want the agency to issue a final decision one way or the other on whether or not the emergency contraceptive Plan B should be sold over-the-counter. The decision has been pending since an FDA scientific advisory panel overwhelmingly voted in favor of selling Plan B over- the-counter back in December 2003.

The senators are right–it's way past time for the FDA to make a decision. Of course, the correct decision should be that the drug should be available right next to the condom display in drugstores. As I have previously asserted, if the FDA decides against allowing Plan B to be sold over-the-counter, Eschenbach's confirmation should go down in flames.

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  1. Plan B is a contraceptive.

    The feds can either allow it to be sold or they can be responsible for more abortions.

    Isn’t it a shame that in this sweet land of liberty, it’s up to the Government to decide?

  2. I don’t really have an opinion about the drug one way or another. But that headline is just so wrong on so many levels.

    Head-bashing wrong. Alternate-reality wrong. Rod-Serling-standing-beside-the-road wrong.

    Wrong, wrong, wrong…

  3. “Wrong, wrong, wrong…”
    Gotta bit of personal animus there? Well, at least you understand that even the slickest of politicians can be correct on occasion. Thank God the parties haven’t driven all policy-based politics off the radar.

  4. Why? Because they want the agency to issue a final decision one way or the other on whether or not the emergency contraceptive Plan B should be sold over-the-counter. The decision has been pending since an FDA scientific advisory panel overwhelmingly voted in favor of selling Plan B over- the-counter back in December 2003.

    It’s not going to happen in this administration. Watch Bush swoop in with some “power” that he thinks he has under the constitution to stop sales.

  5. Hillary is never right about anything.

    Hey, I used to know a libertarian guy named John DeWitt. Last time I broke bread with him was in Alexandria 10 years ago. At the time he was living in Virginia Beach. Are you the same guy?

  6. This is just political opportunism. When Hillary starts agitating to make Amoxicillin over-the-counter I’ll take her a little more seriously.

    Jesus Chrysler, you still have to have a script for BC. Irrespective of the panel’s opinion, why should the morning-after-pill be different? After all, we have 40 years of positive experience with The Pill, which is a lot larger statistical sample to draw from than this RU-486 knock off.

    And Ron may be correct, they should be sold along side condoms but for FDA purposes condoms aren’t drugs.

    Full Disclosure: If I were King I’d abolish the FDA altogether and let you buy whatever the hell drug you want.

  7. Correction, Commonsewer: Plan B is not a knock off of RU 486 (mifepristone), nor is it even the same drug. Levonorgestrel is the medication in Plan B – Levonorgestrel is also a component of many birth control pills and menopausal hormone therapies.

    It is important to distinguish between the two, because one prevents conception from occuring (Levonorgestrel) either before or after insemination by preventing ovum implantation. RU 486 attacks an implanted ovum and is used in conjunction with another hormone that brings on uterine contractions to expel the implanted, fertilized egg.

    One is a contraceptive; RU 486 is an abortifacient.

    Also, Plan B is only available by prescription; RU 486 can be had by any woman less than 8 weeks pregnant in any abortion clinic that provides it.

  8. Correction, Commonsewer: Plan B is not a knock off of RU 486 (mifepristone), nor is it even the same drug. Levonorgestrel is the medication in Plan B – Levonorgestrel is also a component of many birth control pills and menopausal hormone therapies.

    It is important to distinguish between the two, because one prevents conception from occuring (Levonorgestrel) either before or after insemination by preventing ovum implantation. RU 486 disrupts the growth cycle of an implanted ovum and is used in conjunction with another hormone that brings on uterine contractions to expel the implanted, fertilized egg.

    One is a contraceptive; RU 486 is an abortifacient. This distinction is very vital to debate about the issue. Many people confuse the two drugs and think both are abortion drugs – not true. Only one (RU486) is and can only be used in the case of established pregnancy.

    Also, Plan B is only available by prescription; RU 486 can be had by any woman less than 8 weeks pregnant in any abortion clinic that provides it.

  9. If politics makes for strange bedfellows, let’s just sa that I’d still never want to wake up beside Hillary.

    Ugh. Going to go wash out my eyes with soap now.

    Still, as they say, even a broken clock is right once a day.

  10. AmyLou, thanks for the clarification but my snarky remark was more rhetorical than factual. Dramatic license so to speak.

  11. ….prevents conception from occuring (Levonorgestrel) either before or after insemination by preventing ovum implantation. – AmyLou

    Uh, no. It prevents implantation of the fertilized ovum. The “it’s a person at the point of conception” crowd sees that as an abortion, ergo they will never allow it as an over-the-counter drug. As was pointed out in one of the threads arguing about embryonic stem cell research, uncounted numbers of fertilized eggs never implant, with nobody the wiser, so why get so riled about making sure none will latch onto “mama”? Still, that’s the mindset the Plan B proponents are up against.

    Kevin

  12. kevrob: the main, well-known action of the drug is to prevent ovulation, thus preventing pregnancies which may otherwise occur during the (up to 5) days after sex when sperm are still active. people have speculated that it may also prevent implantation as well by making the uterine environment hostile but a) there is no actual existing proof of this proposed mechanism, only informed speculation and b) a nearly-identical cocktail of drugs is often given to pregnant women who experience bleeding early in pregnancy in order to save the pregnancy, making it somewhat less likely that it can ever be an abortifacient even according to the most ardent pouuruvian catholic. in short, these people hate on birth control and no one should listen to them.

  13. Interesting, belle. If your description matches reality, then the Catholic pro-lifers will still be agin it because it is birth control, but they shouldn’t be in favor of banning it, just forbidding their communicants from using it. Anti-abortion folks who don’t have a problem with birth control shouldn’t mind at all.

    Somehow I doubt this will be the case.

    Kevin

  14. Interesting, belle. If your description matches reality, then the Catholic pro-lifers will still be agin it because it is birth control, but they shouldn’t be in favor of banning it, just forbidding their communicants from using it. Anti-abortion folks who don’t have a problem with birth control shouldn’t mind at all.

    Somehow I doubt this will be the case.

    Kevin

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