Pro-Lifers Decry Illegal Immigrant Teen's Abortion

Comes day after 6 Democrat appointees lifted order blocking federal agency from transporting Jane Doe to an abortion clinic

Pro-life activists / Getty
October 25, 2017

Jane Doe, the 17-year-old illegal immigrant at the center of a controversial legal case, has obtained an abortion, according to the American Civil Liberties Union.

"Justice prevailed today for Jane Doe. She was able to get an abortion early this morning," the ACLU tweeted on Wednesday morning.


A district court judge ordered federal officials holding the girl to allow her to have an abortion after complying with Texas ultrasound laws. The Trump administration appealed that order to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, which temporarily halted that order. A full court panel ruled 6-3 with one abstention to allow the abortion to take place on Tuesday. All six of the judges in the majority are Democratic appointees, while the three dissenters are all Republican appointees.

Pro-life activists condemned the ruling, calling it a "tragedy." Students for Life of America President Kristan Hawkins accused the court of putting "the partisan interests of abortion over a teenager's true needs for help," and said that taxpayers should not be forced to pay for an abortion, let alone one for someone in the country illegally. The decision could have significant implications given its expansion of abortion access to "any woman who happens to be on U.S. soil."

"The United States should not become an abortion destination spot for the world. Shame on Planned Parenthood and the ACLU for using this teenager to try and create Roe v. Wade 2.0 in the courts," Hawkins said in a statement.

The Office of Refugee Resettlement, a branch of the U.S. Health and Human Services, housed Ms. Doe. The agency did not respond to request for comment about whether it or any other federal workers provided her transportation to or from the clinic or aided in any other way with the abortion.

News that Ms. Doe performed the abortion almost immediately after the court decision sparked outcry from other pro-life leaders. Catherine Glenn Foster, President and CEO of Americans United for Life, said the organization was "heartbroken" over the case's outcome. She said forcing a federal agency to participate in an abortion breaks "the principles of the Hyde Amendment," which bars taxpayer dollars from paying for abortion.

"Americans do not want their hard-earned taxpayer dollars going to pay for or support elective abortions. And yet that is exactly what has happened today in Texas," she said in a statement. "This is an appalling and unconscionable misuse of taxpayer dollars, and a violation of the principles of the Hyde Amendment. It threatens to conjure a so-called right to immediate abortion on demand from the U.S. Constitution."

Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the pro-life Susan B. Anthony List, said the case illustrates the radical nature of abortion supporters.

"We unequivocally reject abortion advocates’ narrative that justice has been done in this case. Instead the extreme agenda of the abortion lobby and the ACLU has claimed two victims and made a cruel mockery of the 'American dream,'" she said in a statement. "We will continue to oppose all efforts to impose a so-called constitutional right to abortion and turn the United States into a sanctuary nation for abortion."