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Tipsheet

Michigan Hotel Owner Has An Offer For Southern Women Wanting Abortions

AP Photo/Butch Dill

After multiple states in the south passed pro-life bills prohibiting women from obtaining an abortion once a fetus' heartbeat is detected – commonly referred to as "heartbeat bills" – the owner of the Yale Hotel in Michigan has invited women to come to her state to stay at her hotel while they obtain an abortion. 

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The owner, 55-year-old Shelley O’Brien, said she couldn't sit by and watch. She had to do something to help women wanting to obtain an abortion. The mother of three and grandmother of seven said she thought of the Underground Railroad. During slavery, the Underground Railroad was used to free slaves by bringing them to the north. O'Brien said she thought a similar thing could happen with women wanting to obtain abortions.

“This is important. This is my line. There’s no coming back from this. You start taking away the right for women to control their own bodies, and we’re done for as a civilization," O'Brien told the Detroit Free Press."I can’t stop what’s happening, but I have the resources to maybe help someone in that position, and especially knowing that women are coming from other states already."

O'Brien posted on her hotel's Facebook page, letting women know they could stay at her hotel for free if they were visiting the area for the medical procedure. After the initial post, she updated with additional resources, including organizations that provide rides for women to and from their appointments.

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 What's interesting is the town O'Brien lives in, Yale, Michigan, is a quiet conservative town where President Donald Trump won with 65 percent of the vote.

Multiple efforts are currently taking place in Michigan. One group is attempting to get a heartbeat bill passed, although Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) has said she'd veto the legislation. Right to Life of Michigan plans to pursue legislation that would ban dismemberment abortion. The pro-life group plans to go the ballot initiative route for banning dismemberment abortion, which would keep Whitmer from being able to veto the legislation.

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