New Mexico Would Ban Abortions if Roe is Overturned, New Pro-Abortion Bill Would Reverse That

State   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   Jan 8, 2019   |   7:05PM   |   Santa Fe, New Mexico

A New Mexico Catholic bishop spoke out strongly against a radical pro-abortion bill that would erase all state limits on abortion if Roe v. Wade is overturned.

Bishop James Wall of the Catholic Diocese of Gallup urged lawmakers to “promote the prosperity of human life at all stages of development” instead of pushing abortion on demand, the Catholic News Agency reports.

State Rep. Joanne Ferrary, D-Las Cruces, is the lead sponsor of New Mexico House Bill 51, KRQE News reports. If passed, the pro-abortion bill would repeal a state statute that prohibits abortions except in cases of rape, incest or threats to the mother’s life.

The 1960s statute is not in effect because of Roe v. Wade, but if the Supreme Court overturns the case, as abortion activists fear, it would go into effect again.

Ferrary’s bill would change that. Instead of being one of nine states that makes it a crime for an abortionist to kill an unborn baby, New Mexico would become a state that allows abortions without restriction, the Albuquerque Journal reports. Essentially, unborn babies could be aborted for any reason up to birth.

Wall mourned how the bill would hurt mothers and destroy unborn babies if it passes.

“Our state must strive to protect and uphold the dignity of all peoples, from conception to natural death, and any effort to permit the killing of unborn children violates the sanctity of every human person, mother and child,” he said.

“New Mexico consistently ranks low or last among other states in education results, economic opportunities, poverty, and childhood health. An abortion will not fix the obstacles many women and families face, such as economic instability, access to education, and a higher standard of living,” Wall continued.

The bishop said he also was concerned about a lack of conscience protections for medical workers, who could be forced to abort unborn babies in violation of their beliefs, according to the report.

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Some abortion activists have claimed women would be punished if the 1960s-era statute remains on the books, but this is not true and Wall said he would never support punishing women who have abortions.

Historically, the U.S. legal system has not prosecuted women for abortions, even prior to Roe v. Wade. While pro-life advocates yearn for the day when unborn children are protected under law and abortions are banned, the pro-life movement continuously has opposed punishing women who have abortions — instead focusing on holding abortion practitioners criminally accountable for the unborn children they kill in abortions.

New Mexico is one of the few states where late-term abortions on viable, healthy unborn babies are legal and openly practiced. The late-term abortion facility Southwestern Women’s Options in Albuquerque is facing a lawsuit for allegedly killing a young woman in a botched abortion when she was six months pregnant with her unborn child. The facility also has been linked to the aborted baby body parts scandal.

New Mexico lacks many common sense abortion regulations right now, such as parental consent for minors, informed consent and limits on taxpayer-funded abortions.

Despite these concerns, there is a possibility that the bill could pass. Democrats control both state houses, and incoming Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham said she will sign the bill if it reaches her desk, according to the New Mexico Political Report. House Speaker Brian Egolf also said he would make the pro-abortion bill a priority, according to the report.

New York state is considering a similar pro-abortion bill this winter.