Trump official tried to block abortion for undocumented minor who was raped

A Trump administration official looked to block an abortion for an immigrant minor in the U.S. illegally who was impregnated after being raped, newly released court documents show. 

Scott Lloyd, who oversees immigrant minors as director of the Office of Refugee Resettlement, said the abortion would be “violence against an innocent life.” 

“Even supposing it was possible to justify abortion in this context, abortion does not here cure the reality that she is the victim of an assault,” Lloyd wrote in a Dec. 17 memo. 

The 17-year-old, called Jane Poe in court documents, had an abortion earlier this week after winning a court order. 

According to the memo, Poe came to the U.S several weeks after the assault and was apprehended at the border. 

Lloyd wrote in the memo he could not approve the abortion because it would be the “ultimate destruction of another human being.” 

“Certainly, it is understandable that a woman who is pregnant from the vile actions of a criminal would want to terminate her pregnancy,” Lloyd wrote. 

“But I cannot authorize our program to participate in the abortion requested here, even in this most difficult case.” 

Poe was 22 weeks pregnant at the time the memo was written. 

The Office of Refugee Resettlement has went to court twice under Lloyd after seeking to block abortions for a total of three immigrant minors in U.S. custody. 

The administration has ordered that federally funded detention shelters can’t facilitate access to abortions for minors in custody.

No final ruling has been issued on the legality of the issue. 

The Democratic leaders of the Congressional Pro-Choice Caucus on Friday called on the House Judiciary Committee to subpoena Lloyd and other Health and Human Services Department officials involved in the decision to deny Poe’s abortion. 

“According to these court filings, the Trump Administration attempted to force a rape victim to carry a pregnancy to term against her will,” Reps. Diana DeGette (Colo.) and Louise Slaughter (N.Y.) wrote in a letter to the committee.

“This is an egregious, unconscionable violation of Jane Poe’s right to make this decision. We fear that other women currently in detention may be facing similar injustices at the hands of Trump Administration officials.”

The lawmakers also asked the committee to question Lloyd when Congress returns in January.