The American commercial name of mifepristone, an anti-progestin commonly used as an abortifacient, first synthesized in 1980 in France, and marketed throughout Europe by Roussel Uclaf as RU-486. In 1993, Bill Clinton overturned the ban George Bush placed on the drug. The FDA announced in 1996 that mifepristone was safe for distribution in the States. The Population Council, a non-profit organization that owns the American rights to the abortion pill, gave license to market the drug to Danco (a corporation founded solely to distribute Mifeprex). Mifeprex is shown to cause severe bleeding in 1.2% of women taking the drug. The pill fails to induce abortion in nearly 5% of women--requiring a surgical abortion be performed. In October, 2000, American women were given access to the drug, after 20 years of testing.

January, 2001, the newly "elected" George Bush II announced his administration would be investigating the "safety" of the drug.