Mary Margaret Olohan on June 24, 2019
Republican Florida Sen. Marco Rubio pushed the Trump administration Monday to intervene in the case of a Catholic disabled woman forced to have an abortion against her will.
British Justice Nathalie Lieven ruled Friday that the woman, who has the mental age of a child between 6 and 9 and is 22 weeks pregnant, must have a forced abortion. The woman is in her 20’s, according to the New York Times, and police are currently investigating how she was impregnated.
The Court of Appeal overturned the court order Monday, according to the Press Association.
Rubio reached out in a letter Monday to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and acting Secretary of Homeland Security Kevin McAleenan to intervene in what Rubio called “a clear human rights violation.”
The Florida senator suggested that the United States help this woman seek a “humanitarian alternative” to the forced abortion.
“I write with grave concern about the case of a 22-week pregnant Catholic woman with developmental disabilities in the United Kingdom who—against the wishes of her and her Nigerian-origin mother—is being required by a British court to undergo a forced late-term abortion,” Rubio wrote in the letter.
“I urge your Departments to quickly investigate this case and, within all applicable laws and regulations, to offer assistance to her and her mother in seeking alternative medical car,” the Florida senator added.
The NHS trust that is responsible for care of the pregnant woman requested doctors to perform the abortion, UK-based Sky News reported.
“I am acutely conscious of the fact that for the State to order a woman to have a termination where it appears that she doesn’t want it is an immense intrusion,” Lieven said Friday according to the Times at the Court of Protection. The court typically makes decisions for persons who cannot make decisions for themselves.
Lieven says she must act in the woman’s “best interests, not on society’s views of termination” and that the woman would not understand what it meant to give birth.
“It is critical to note the fact that this pregnant Catholic woman and her mother oppose the ruling,” Rubio added in his Monday letter.
“Even British Justice Lieven has acknowledged their opposition and the ‘immense intrusion’ that her ruling to authorize a forced late-term abortion on this woman therefore represents.”
The woman’s mother is Catholic and cited both her own and her daughter’s religious beliefs in her protests against the decision. The mother is a former midwife from Nigeria who wishes to care for the child, according to the Times. The woman’s mother, her social worker, and her lawyers all protested against Lieven’s ruling.
But the Court of Appeal, composed of Lord Justice Richard McCombe, Lady Justice Eleanor King and Lord Justice Peter Jackson, overturned Lieven’s previous ruling on Monday, according to the Press Association.
The publication reveals that judges said they would reveal the full background on why they made such a ruling later.