California ends $54M contract with Walgreens over abortion pill

Walgreens announced last week it would not distribute abortion pills in 20 states, following pressure from a group of conservative attorneys general.
Posted at 9:28 AM, Mar 07, 2023

California will no longer be doing business with Walgreens over the company's decision to not sell abortion pills in certain states.

Newsom’s office released a statementWednesday saying the state would be “pulling back” renewal of a $54 million contract with Walgreens that was set to take effect May 1. 

“California will not stand by as corporations cave to extremists and cut off critical access to reproductive care and freedom,” Newsom said in the statement. “California is on track to be the fourth largest economy in the world and we will leverage our market power to defend the right to choose.”

On Monday, Newsom criticized the pharmacy chain's decision about the pills in a tweet, saying, "California won't be doing business with @walgreens — or any company that cowers to the extremists and puts women's lives at risk. We're done."

Wednesday's statement announced the first contract the state was ending. Newsom said other contracts with Walgreens are also being reviewed.

Walgreens announced last week it would not distribute mifepristone in 20 states following pressure from a group of conservative attorneys general:

- Andrew Bailey (Missouri)                          - Jeff Landry (Louisiana)

- Steve Marshall (Alabama)                         - Lynn Fitch (Mississippi)

- Treg Taylor (Alaska)                                    - Austin Knudsen (Montana)

- Tim Griffin (Arkansas)                                - Drew Wrigley (North Dakota)

- Ashley Moody (Florida)                             - Dave Yost (Ohio)

- Chris Carr (Georgia)                                   - Gentner F. Drummond (Oklahoma)

- Todd Rokita (Indiana)                                 - Alan Wilson (South Carolina)

- Brenna Bird (Iowa)                                      - Marty Jackley (South Dakota)

- Daniel Cameron (Kentucky)                      - Ken Paxton (Texas)

- Sean D. Reyes (Utah)                                  - Patrick Morrisey (West Virginia)

bottles of abortion pills at a clinic

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Data from one study show erectile dysfunction drugs have a mortality rate of about four times greater than Mifeprex.


Newsom has long been an outspoken advocate for abortion rights. 

After the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, Newsom touted a new California website dedicated to locating and accessing abortion services.

He also ran a billboard campaign in seven GOP-led states where abortion bans are in effect directing people to the website.

Medication abortions now make up more than half of U.S. abortions, according to the Guttmacher Institute, a research group that supports abortion rights.

According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, mifepristone is used to terminate pregnancies up to 10 weeks. 

The drug was approved by the FDA in 2000 and works by blocking a specific hormone the body needs to continue a pregnancy.