A radical pro-abortion bill that may cause doctors and nurses to flee the state passed the New Mexico legislature on Friday.
State Senate Bill 10, which allows unborn babies to be aborted for any reason up to birth, is expected to become law. It passed the state House on Friday in a 40-30 vote, with all the Republicans and six Democrats voting against it, Las Cruces Sun News reports.
The state Senate passed the bill earlier this month, and Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham said it is one of her top priorities.
The pro-abortion bill would repeal a 1969 New Mexico statute that prohibits abortions except in cases of rape, incest or threats to the mother’s life. The statute is not in effect because of Roe v. Wade, but if it is repealed, the state would continue to allow unborn babies to be aborted for any reason up to birth even if Roe is overturned.
New Mexico already allows unborn babies to be aborted for any reason up to birth. It is home to one of the few abortion facilities in the country that advertises abortions in the third trimester.
Pro-life advocates have warned that the bill would jeopardize the rights of medical workers as well as unborn babies in New Mexico.
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If enacted, the bill would repeal the only conscience protections for medical workers in the state. Currently, the statute protects medical workers from discrimination if they refuse to abort an unborn baby on moral or religious grounds.
“The radical abortion lobby seeks to force medical professionals across New Mexico to perform abortions as a matter of ‘access.’ This is not a pro-woman bill but rather, a pro-abortion lobby bill,” said Elisa Martinez, executive director of the New Mexico Alliance for Life.
Doctors and Republican leaders said the bill would cause medical workers to flee the state, but Democrats in the state House and Senate rejected amendments to keep the conscience protections in place.
“I think as a state we are making a huge mistake here today,” said state Rep. T. Ryan Lane, R-Aztec, on Friday before the vote, the AP reports. “We are impacting physicians who have no desire to be a part of these types of elective procedures or even medical procedures.”
Democrat lawmakers rejected amendments from state Reps. Cathrynn Brown, R-Carlsbad, and Rebecca Dow, R-Truth or Consequences, to keep the conscience protections in the statute, according to Sun News.
Dow also shared her own crisis pregnancy story as she begged lawmakers to reject the pro-abortion bill.
Pregnant at 19 while attending college, Dow said she was worried about how a baby would affect her ability to get an education, Santa Fe New Mexican reports. Dow said she chose life because she realized that aborting her baby “would be stopping a heartbeat.”
State Rep. Stefani Lord, R-Sandia Park, also gave a passionate plea for keeping the pro-life statute. According to the local news, Lord said her birth mother considered aborting her but ultimately chose life and adoption instead.
“We’re talking about me,” Lord said. “You keep talking about wanting to have strong women — they have to be born first.”
But state Rep. Micaela Lara Cadena, D-Mesilla, insisted that the repeal would protect women’s rights to make their own decisions about their bodies.
“Government has no place in these complex decisions,” Cadena said.
Pro-abortion Democrat lawmakers also argued that the legislation is necessary because the new conservative-majority U.S. Supreme Court may overturn Roe v. Wade.
The bill is similar to laws that passed recently in New York, Vermont, Massachusetts and Rhode Island. New Jersey also is considering a bill to expand the killing of unborn babies in abortions this year.
ACTION ALERT: Contact Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and urge her to veto the pro-abortion bill.