New Mexico asks court to overturn cities' abortion bans

  • In US
  • 2023-01-24 03:27:20Z
  • By Reuters

By Andrew Hay

TAOS, N.M. (Reuters) - New Mexico's top prosecutor on Monday asked the state's highest court to overturn abortion bans imposed by conservative local governments in the Democratic-run state where the procedure remains legal after Roe v. Wade was struck down.

The move comes after the New Mexico cities of Hobbs, Clovis and two surrounding counties bordering Texas passed ordinances in recent months to restrict abortion clinics and access to abortion pills.

New Mexico Attorney General Raul Torrez filed an extraordinary writ in New Mexico Supreme Court to block the ordinances which he said were based on flawed interpretations of 19th century federal regulations on abortion medication.

"This is not Texas. Our State Constitution does not allow cities, counties or private citizens to restrict women's reproductive rights," Torrez said in a statement.

Right-to-life activists said the regulations remained valid under federal law and vowed to work on bringing such ordinances to more cities in New Mexico, the only state bordering Texas where abortion remains legal.

New Mexico's largest cities of Las Cruces and Albuquerque have become regional destinations for women seeking abortions since the U.S. Supreme Court in June ended the nationwide constitutional right to the procedure.

Located on New Mexico's eastern plains, Clovis and Hobbs do not have abortion clinics but approved ordinances to stop providers locating there to serve patients from Republican-controlled Texas, one of the first states to impose a near-total ban on abortion.

In direct response, New Mexico Democrats have drafted legislation to prevent cities from overriding state laws guaranteeing womens' rights to reproductive healthcare. The legislation is due to be debated this month and has a strong chance of passing the Democratic-controlled state legislature.

The small community of Eunice on Monday became the third New Mexico town to pass an ordinance, according to anti-abortion activist Mark Lee Dickson.

"Cities and counties across the state remain on good standing to pass ordinances," said Dickson, director of Right To Life East Texas, adding that the regulations had never been repealed by the U.S. Congress or declared invalid by the U.S. Supreme Court.

(Reporting by Andrew Hay in Taos, New Mexico; Additional reporting by Brad Brooks in Lubbock, Texas; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)


More Related News

Guilty of abetting abortion, Polish woman vows to fight on
Guilty of abetting abortion, Polish woman vows to fight on
  • US
  • 2023-03-24 07:34:51Z

The way Justyna Wydrzyńska sees it, Ania was a victim of domestic violence just like she was. Everyone worried that Poland's borders might close, halting...

'Historic moment' as El Salvador abortion case fuels hopes for expanded access across Latin America
  • US
  • 2023-03-24 07:00:16Z

Human rights court hears seriously ill woman denied procedure as advocates call for change in region with world's most restrictive abortion laws

Analysis-In US abortion pill case, FDA could soften blow of court-ordered restrictions
Analysis-In US abortion pill case, FDA could soften blow of court-ordered restrictions
  • US
  • 2023-03-23 10:16:31Z

A conservative federal judge in Texas could soon order the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to reconsider its 22-year-old approval for a pill used in the...

Arrest made in fire at planned Wyoming abortion clinic
Arrest made in fire at planned Wyoming abortion clinic
  • World
  • 2023-03-22 23:44:53Z

A woman was arrested on charges of setting fire to a building in Wyoming that was being renovated to house the state's only full-service abortion clinic...

Abortion debate churns with legislation and lawsuits
Abortion debate churns with legislation and lawsuits

Nine months after the U.S. Supreme Court ended a nationwide right to an abortion, the landscape is far from settled, with lawmakers considering broader bans ...

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply


Top News: US