LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – A judge in California had to speed up the naturalization of a pregnant immigrant on Thursday when the woman, anxious to become a U.S. citizen because of President Donald Trump’s immigration policies, started experiencing contractions.
The 31-year-old Armenian-American woman, who was scheduled to give birth to her second child next week by cesarean section, said she started to feel contractions after a walk to a Los Angeles convention center where the judge was naturalizing about 3,200 immigrants.
She refused to leave until she was sworn in as a U.S. citizen, said U.S. District Judge Cormac Carney, who performed an impromptu naturalization ceremony before the official event began for immigrants from 114 different countries.
The woman, who asked to be identified only by her first name, Tatev, said she returned home and the contractions stopped once she rested.
Tatev said concerns about Trump’s hard-line stance on immigration prompted her to accelerate her 6-year-long naturalization process.
“I sped up this process because of the fact of the current president, because the immigration laws are under attack,” said Tatev, a former California high school history teacher, adding she was fearful her green card, which makes her a legal permanent U.S. resident, would be taken from her.