The Trump administration is and always has been an all-star lineup of some of the most despicable people on the planet, but even in this tough crowd, Scott Lloyd always stood out for both his ambivalence towards the lives of immigrants and insistence on controlling the bodies of young immigrant women.
I say “stood out,” because on Wednesday, the Department of Health and Human Services buried the news that Lloyd will be leaving the administration at the end of next week in a tweet about personnel changes.
Prior to serving as a senior adviser to HHS’ Center for Faith and Opportunity Initiatives, Lloyd was the director of the Office of Refugee Resettlement. In that role, he oversaw the detention of child migrants in shelters run by the agency, including the nearly 3,000 children who were separated from their families by the administration last year. Lloyd also helped HHS in its oversight of family reunification, which rather predictably turned out to be a miserable failure; Politico reported last year that he directed his office to stop tracking separated families, a claim he disputed.
Earlier this year, Lloyd testified in a congressional hearing that he failed to inform his bosses in the Trump administration about the long-term ramifications of family separation.
While he obviously didn’t think that was an important enough point to raise, he did reportedly monitor the menstrual cycles and pregnancies of minors in ORR custody as recently as June 2018. This was after a federal judge ruled in April 2018 that ORR and Lloyd could not bar migrant teens from getting abortions, which, yes, he was very much trying to do.
HHS would only say that Lloyd was departing the agency for an “opportunity outside the administration.” Let’s just hope that opportunity isn’t a book deal.