A 17-year-old girl is in the midst of a major court battle between the Trump administration and the ACLU. The girl, an undocumented immigrant, is 15 weeks pregnant, and came from Central America to the United States, where she is living in a shelter.
She claims she got permission from a state judge to have an abortion, but federal officials would not take her to an abortion facility. The ACLU quickly got involved, and alleged that federal officials took her to a pregnancy resource center, where she was shown an ultrasound of her baby.
“They are holding her hostage to ensure that she does not have an abortion, but rather continues the pregnancy, and has a baby, against her will,” the ACLU said in a legal brief to U.S. District Judge Tanya S. Chutkan to rule in their favor. “Entirely shutting off a person’s access to abortion services is the greatest conceivable ‘undue burden’ on a person’s constitutional right to an abortion — it prohibits her from exercising her rights at all.”
Wednesday, Chutkan ruled that the teenager should be given the abortion, ordering the government to take her to the nearest abortion facility, where she would receive pre-abortion counseling, as required by the state of Texas, and undergo a dilation and evacuation, or D&E, by Friday or Saturday.
A D&E abortion is a particularly violent procedure, as explained by former abortionist Dr. Anthony Levatino in this video. The abortionist uses a sopher clamp to literally rip the preborn baby apart, limb by limb. It’s especially horrifying, as the newest scientific evidence shows that preborn babies are capable of feeling pain as early as eight weeks gestation.
Columnist Matt Walsh also explained that the government is not barring the 17-year-old from getting an abortion. “[D]espite how this case may be presented, it’s not as though they’re holding the girl against her will and forcing her to remain pregnant,” Walsh said. “They simply told her that if she wants an abortion she must return home to Mexico for it. If she wants to remain in custody, the federal government is not going to play any role in facilitating the abortion of her second trimester baby. She could go home if she wants. She is not being held hostage.”
If this teenager is allowed to get an abortion, it sets a disturbing precedent. Not only will her preborn child be killed, it will also encourage other pregnant minors to illegally cross the border, knowing that they can get abortions, likely funded by American taxpayers. The Trump administration isn’t just trying to stop this one particular abortion; they’re trying to prevent the onset of abortion tourism.
Fortunately, an appeals court has intervened for now. The Department of Health and Human Services filed an appeal requesting that Chutkan’s ruling be halted, which the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia granted. HHS argued that there is a policy “refusing to facilitate abortions,” with the only exceptions being in “very limited circumstances.”
For now, the teenager can still have the pre-abortion counseling. Another hearing will be held Friday, during which the court can lift the stay, allowing the girl to have the abortion Friday or Saturday as planned.