Effort to Repeal Unenforced New Mexico Law Criminalizing Abortion Fails in Senate

    Updated: March 15, 2019 at 1:14 pm EST  See Comments

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    SANTA FE, N.M. —  A bill that would have repealed an existing, unenforced law in New Mexico that criminalizes abortion has failed in the state Senate.

    Eight Democrats joined with the 16 Republicans in the Senate to defeat the measure 24-18. The New Mexico Senate has a Democratic majority.

    According to the Albuquerque Journal, Sen. Gabriel Ramos, D-Silver City, cited his faith as he advised his colleagues on the Senate floor that he could not vote for the measure.

    “This is one of the toughest decisions any of us will ever have to make,” he said. “I stand unified against legislation that weakens the defense of life and threatens the dignity of the human being.”

    “The state of New Mexico must strive to protect and uphold the dignity of all people from conception to death,” Ramos declared.

    As previously reportedHouse Bill 51, also known as “Decriminalize Abortion,” simply reads, “Sections 30-5-1 through 30-5-3 NMSA 1978 (being Laws 1969, Chapter 67, Sections 1 through 3) are repealed.”

    Sponsored by Reps. Joanne Ferrary, D-Las Cruces, and Georgene Louis, D-Albuquerque, the text refers to the criminal abortion statutes that were passed in 1969, and have been unenforced since the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court ruling of Roe v. Wade.

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    “Criminal abortion consists of administering to any pregnant woman any medicine, drug or other substance, or using any method or means whereby an untimely termination of

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