New Mexico Democrats seek repeal of outdated abortion ban
Published: Monday, November 19th, 2018 at 8:23am
Updated: Monday, November 19th, 2018 at 5:43pm | 11/19/2018 | Staff
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SANTA FE, N.M. — Democrats in the New Mexico Legislature are preparing plans to ensure legal, safe access to abortions in case regulation of the procedure is returned to states.

State Rep. Joanne Ferrary of Las Cruces said she plans to introduce legislation for the next session that removes the state’s criminal ban on abortion in case the U.S. Supreme Court overturns a 1973 decision that made the procedure legal nationwide.

Cause - Urgency - Addition - Justices - President

She said her cause has taken on new urgency with the addition of Republican-appointed justices under President Donald Trump.

A 1969 New Mexico statute made it a felony for an abortion provider to terminate a pregnancy, with exceptions for rape, birth defects and serious threats to a woman’s health. The law has been unenforceable for 45 years because of the high court’s ruling.

New - Mexico - States - Abortion - Bans

New Mexico is one of nine states that retain abortion bans that are not enforced because of the Supreme Court decision, according to the abortion rights Guttmacher Institute that monitors local laws. Four more states have laws that would automatically ban abortion if the Supreme Court rescinds the Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion.

Identical bills to repeal New Mexico’s abortion ban since the election of Trump went nowhere during the tenure of Republican Gov. Susan Martinez, who leaves office at the end of the year.

Proposal - Support - Gov-elect - Michelle - Lujan

The revived proposal has the public support of Democratic Gov.-elect Michelle Lujan Grisham. Democratic House Speaker Brian Egolf and Senate majority leader Peter Wirth have set repeal as a high priority for the legislative session that starts in January.

“It is an antiquated law intended to punish women, whose reproductive choices should be between their physician or medical practitioner and themselves,” Lujan Grisham said last week. “If the bill gets through — and I feel strongly that it will — that would be something we would...
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