Last night, Albuquerque voters took to the polls to vote on a ballot measure that would ban abortion after 20 weeks. I’ve been on the ground in Albuquerque for 10 days supporting the Respect ABQ Women campaign and engaging young voters, and I’m thrilled to report that Albuquerque voters rejected this ballot measure!
The first of its kind, this ballot measure was the first to be presented at a municipal level, and was created to target the Southwest Women’s Options clinic, one of only a few clinics in the country that provide late-term abortions. Had it passed, it would have cut off access to late-term abortion procedures for people all over New Mexico and in some parts of Arizona and Texas. While no one should have to explain or defend their decision to end a pregnancy, it is worth mentioning that late-term abortions only account for about 1% of all abortions and typically occur when there is a severe complication in the pregnancy. Attacking abortion access for the folks who need it the most reveal the true intention of the “Protect ABQ Women” campaign, and others like it – which is to ban abortion altogether.
The ballot included no exceptions (not that we need any) for cases of rape, incest, fetal anomalies, or the health of the pregnant parent. Instead, the “Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Ordinance” relied on the weak argument that fetuses begin to feel pain at 20 weeks.
Luckily Albuquerque voters believe in medical decisions that are kept private and between individuals, their family, and their faith! Hopefully this sets the tone for future abortion fights in other states, like Texas, and the nation.
Sesali is a writer and living testament to the fact that you can take the girl out of Chicago, but you can’t take Chicago out of the girl.