Confusion May Have Led to Albuquerque Abortion Ban Loss, Pro-Lifers Voted “Against” Abortion

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Nov 20, 2013   |   10:58AM   |   Albuquerque, NM

Voter confusion may have played a small role in last-nights defeat of the late-term abortion ban in Albuquerque, New Mexico, which lost on a 55-45 percentage point margin.

Cheryl Sullenger, Senior Policy Advisor, who assisted the ABQ Voters Against Late Term Abortion Ban campaign and was in Albuquerque for the vote, told LifeNews there was some confusion among pro-life voters, who wound up voting against the ban because they thought a vote for “Against” was a vote against abortion.

She also promised to LifeNews that pro-life advocates would try again in another election to stop late-term abortions with a second petition.

“We understand that some supporters of the ordinance actually voted against it because they thought they were voting against abortion. That is an issue that can be easily corrected next time around,” said Sullenger. “Now the local activists in Albuquerque have been seasoned and things just might turn out differently if we can get another bite of this apple.”

“Pro-life supporters may have suffered a political loss, but we are far from defeated. We’ll be back,” she said. “It is clear that the people are uncomfortable with late-term abortions and would like to see them end. We learned a lot from this campaign, and we look forward to another try that will better reflect the true feeling of the voters on this subject.”

Sullenger told LifeNews that the opposition to the ordinance, which would have been the first-ever municipal ballot measure to ban abortions after 20 weeks when babies are known to feel pain, outspent the pro-life campaigns by a margin of 4 to 1. In addition, Organizing for Action, which was heavily involved in Albuquerque, is essentially President Obama’s presidential campaign, which continues to advance a radical leftist agenda. Their experience helped turn out “against” votes in early voting that made the difference in the outcome of the race.

Sullenger said the daring pro-life campaign to protect unborn babies after twenty weeks from death from barbaric and dangerous abortion practices succeeded in focusing the attention of the world on the matter of late-term abortions and created a template for activists in other communities to use to affect change in abortion laws in their communities, shifting their focus away from politicians in Washington, D.C. who are reticent to engage in legislation on abortion.

“I am so very proud of the work done by Albuquerque activists, especially Bud and Tara Shaver, who poured three years of their lives into exposing abuses at the largest late-term abortion clinic in the nation,” said Sullenger, who worked with the Shavers for a year at Operation Rescue Headquarters in Wichita, Kansas. “They are the best and it was my honor to work with them on this campaign. We can only expect more exciting things in the future from them as their work to end abortion in New Mexico continues.”



Father Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, whose group also supported the measure, told LifeNews that the pro-life movement should not feel discouraged.

“Pro-lifers in Albuquerque and elsewhere should not feel discouraged about the defeat of the effort to protect unborn babies from 20 weeks forward. It is a brilliant strategy and we will see to it that this effort is introduced in other cities and states. The fact is, of course, that children have in fact been saved through this effort, simply because we have raised the issue of fetal pain, which does not even cross the minds of many abortionists,” he said.

He looked to the pending Senate bill as a way for pro-lifers to rally.

“The Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act has been introduced in the U.S. Senate and already passed by the House. This effort in Albuquerque has helped raise awareness of the inhumanity of a procedure that can no longer hide behind the euphemism of choice. We will build on that awareness to pass this measure on the federal level,” Pavone said.