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Michigan signs on in support of federal effort to deny abortions to undocumented minors

Jan 12, 2018

Credit steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Michigan has taken the side of the Trump administration in its attempts to block detained teen immigrants from getting abortions while in federal custody.

The American Civil Liberties Union represents the undocumented, unaccompanied minors in a lawsuit against the Trump administration.

The lawsuit says many of them have been sexually abused or assaulted either in their home countries, during their journeys to the U.S., or after their arrivals.

The lawsuit claims the Trump administration is violating the teens' constitutional rights by preventing them from terminating their pregnancies and by forcing them to visit anti-abortion pregnancy crisis centers.

Attorney General Bill Schuette has joined ten other states in a brief that was filed earlier this week. It argues the minors have no constitutional right to an abortion because there is no evidence that they have "developed substantial connections with the country."

The states claim an interest in the lawsuit because they say they bear many consequences of unlawful immigration and because they have a "legitimate and substantial interest in preserving and promoting fetal life" and "in promoting respect for human life in all stages in the pregnancy."

In addition to Michigan, the states that signed onto the brief are Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, West Virginia, and Kentucky.